Having a waterproof or shock proof phone case is great, but it doesn’t do you a lot of good if you can’t retrieve your phone from where it’s been dropped. This is the Beeline case for iPhone 6 and its main goal is to solve that very problem. Beeline was kind enough to send me these cases for review and in this review we’ll find out if Beeline’s unique retractable carabiner make it a worthy companion for your next outdoor adventure.
The case’s primary selling point is a retractable carabiner that’s attached to a durable sprocket in the back of the case via a 30″ Kevlar cord. Beeline refers to this as the stinger. The default mode is known as lock step. The stinger pulls out, ratcheting along the way, and stays where you leave it. It retracts by pressing up on the button on the back. If you hold up on the button it puts it in free flow mode. This makes the stinger always retract and make much less noise when pulling it out. Unfortunately you can’t lock this button in free flow mode but Beeline did say that’s something they’re looking at for the next version.
For day to day use I did find myself being very self-conscious about the ratcheting noise that it made when you would pull your phone out of my pocket. After all, you don’t want to be this guy. Thankfully, when you hold the button in the up position it puts it in free flow mode so it’s a little less distracting.
All the materials for the stinger feel very sturdy. The carabiner is made of zinc and the cord is a non fraying Kevlar that doesn’t give at all and is surprisingly strong. Also the attachment point where the Kevlar cord meets the carabiner is really strong as well. The one downside of the stinger is the amount of play that the latch has. Most of the time it will spring back shut with no problems. However if it’s pressed to one side the latch will hit the carabiner and not close all the way. It’s an easy fix but it’s something that I wish Beeline would have made a little tighter. Most of the time I was able to quickly and easily snap the stinger onto my belt loop. And to be honest it’s not that noticeable or distracting. For ladies on the go this makes a lot of sense. Just clip the stinger to something on your purse, tuck your phone away, and you’ll never have to worry about losing your phone again.
To install the case you place your phone in button side first and then snap in place. It snaps on very easily and is a very tight fit. Even though there’s very little lip I’m not concerned at all with my phone popping out of this case. To remove you pull the carabiner out of the way and use the ejection port behind this area to pop your phone out of the case.
While this is a great case for dry environments and it will prevent your phone from plummeting to its death, there’d be a lot more use cases if it also made your phone waterproof. I was able to speak with the inventor of Beeline cases, Brent Williams, and although he wasn’t prepared to give me actual release dates he did say that a waterproof version is already in the works.
When I first heard about this case and how Brent designed it after losing his iPhone when he dropped it off a ski lift I was immediately sold on the practicality of it. After having used it for a number of weeks I can definitely say it will keep your iPhone safe by your side. I just wish that it could do that while canoeing, white water rafting, or even surfing. I was very impressed with the durability of the stinger and ratcheting mechanism. Beeline said they have a case they’ve stress tested with over 100,000 pulls on it. You don’t have to worry about these components failing anytime soon. I don’t see this being a daily case for most people but more of a case you’d use when hiking, rock climbing, or biking. However for people who travel in airports a lot, construction workers, or motorcycle riders this case makes a lot of sense. They even have a mossy oak version for hunters. You can purchase them from beelinecases.com or Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/Beeline-Protective-iPhone-Retractable-Carabiner/dp/B00WRBLHL6/) for $60 with free shipping. They currently have versions for the iPhone 5 and 5S as well as the 6 and 6 Plus. If you have any questions I didn’t cover please leave them in the comments. If you enjoyed this video review please give it a thumbs up and consider subscribing if you haven’t done so already. And as always, thanks for watching.