The iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max have been available since Sept. 21 and we've got plenty of cases in-house already and more on the way. So get started on picking the perfect case that will protect your investment -- and be compatible with wireless charging. (Yes, all the cases in the roundup are compatible with wireless charging).
If you're wondering whether older, possibly discounted iPhone X cases will fit the new iPhone XS, the answer is most will, but a few won't. The XS is exactly the same overall dimensions as the X, but the camera bump has some slight differences that can lead to issues with a small number of cases. So long as your X case has a tiny bit of space around the camera bump -- many, if not most, do -- it should fit an XS.
The XS Max, obviously, is an all-new 6.5-inch size, so you'll need to seek out Max-specific models for that one. Rubbery iPhone Plus cases may fit, but because the Max's camera bump is vertical instead of horizontal, they won't suffice.
I'm a fan of Speck's Presidio Sport case, which is basically a tougher version of Apple's Silicone case and has a similar soft-to-the-touch finish that's nice and grippy. Speck calls it a "no-slip grip."
For some folks, the Sport was a little bulky, so Speck decided to make the Presidio Pro, which is essentially a standard Presidio case with its no-slip grip. Like the sport it has Microban antimicrobial technology, which is supposed to "inhibit the growth bacteria that causes stains and odors."
It's a little expensive at $40 but it is one of the best iPhone XS cases out there. It also comes in an XS Max version for $5 more.
Available in a few different color options, the Presidio Sport was ostensibly designed for gym rats or people who run with their iPhones. But it's basically a tougher version of Apple's Silicone case and has a similar soft-to-the-touch finish that's nice and grippy. Speck calls it a "no-slip grip."
Typically, Speck cases have featured harder plastic shells -- some of them glossy -- so the new finish really is new. So, too, is the addition of Microban antimicrobial technology, which is supposed to "inhibit the growth bacteria that causes stains and odors."
The Presidio Sport holds up well over time. It also feels good in your hand and isn't too bulky for a tough case. Some people don't like the little button that covers the mute switch -- it does stick out a little -- but that's the only design gripe.
At $45 or £25 (around AU$60), it is a little expensive. However, Apple's Silicone case is $39, so maybe it's not such a bad deal when you consider that it's more protective and has that extra layer of Microban.
The claim to fame of Speck's Stay Clear Presidio case ($40) is that it stays clear and doesn't turn yellow over time like a lot of cheaper clear cases do. Why? It's infused with a special coating to keep the oil from your skin from penetrating it. And it's tough, drop-tested to 8 feet.
The OtterBox Symmetry Series is the company's most stylish case and is both fairly slim and protective (it's similar to Speck's cases, which certainly influenced OtterBox's design). It comes in a variety of color options and starts at $40 (£30, AU$60). However, iPhone X versions (which fit the XS) are available for around $25 at Amazon.
One of my favorite folio cases -- the OtterBox Strada -- is back for the Phone XS and XS Max (The XS version is down to $30 on Amazon since it's been out for a while for the iPhone X). It's highly protective and has a card slot on the inside of the cover that allows you to store a single credit card and perhaps a driver's license or some money. Handy, since Apple Pay still isn't universally accepted yet.
Speck's Presidio Series comes in a multitude of flavors, including the aforementioned Grip and Clear, as well as the Show (shown here -- $40). The Show is also available in versions that have different trim colors.
Argentina-based Vaja makes some sweet handmade leather and vegan leather cases, although they're pretty pricey.
The one on the left in blue is simply called The Top iPhone X Leather case ($109, roughly £77 orAU$135 converted). Available in multiple color options, it's a flip-down style clamshell model that I like (the top cover obviously protects your screen).
The case on the right is the Wallet Agenda, one of the company's most popular models. The leather is supersoft and the case stores four credit cards, plus it has a slot for folded bills. It costs $150 (£106 or AU$185 converted) and comes in multiple color options (some colors are temporarily out of stock).
We've always been longtime fans of cases from Tech21. As expected, the company has an assortment of new cases for the iPhone XS and XS Max, including (from left to right) the Evo Luxe Faux Leather, Evo Luxe Active Edition, Evo Luxe Woven Fabric and Pure Soda. Prices range from $40-$55.
Old stalwarts such as the Evo Check are also available for both the iPhone XS and XS Max.
Tech 21's Evo Max is a new extra tough case that features a slider that covers the camera for added protection. As you slide it open, it cleans off the camera's lens. It starts at $40 and is available for both the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max in deep blue and black. A holster is included.
When phones started becoming waterproof, LifeProof lost a little bit of its raison d'être. After all, one of the main selling points of its cases was that they allowed your phone to take a dip.
Now the company has shifted gears a bit and focusing instead on making slimmer, more attractive cases that offer good drop protection. Case in point: its Slam case that retails for $50, £43 or AU$55 and comes in four different color options, all of which feature a translucent back to show off your iPhone's rear.
I'm not sure it's all that different from competing cases out there, including ones from LifeProof's parent company OtterBox. But I like it -- it's well-designed -- and at least it costs less than LifeProof's other cases like the Next, which goes for $80 (see next slide).
Note: The Woodland Camo color pictured here is coming soon.
Available in a few different trim colors, the LifeProof Next Case is a bit more protective and has a gasket that seals off the Lightning port. The case is "drop-proof, dirt-proof and snow-proof." The $80 price converts to approximately £60 or AU$100.
LifeProof's totally waterproof Fre ($90) remains the most protective in the line. They're good cases, but they should cost less.
Urban Armor Gear (UAG) is bringing its full line of cases to the iPhone XS and XS Max, which start at $40 (£30 or AU$45 converted). I personally like the Plasma, which features a translucent design in a few color options, and Pathfinder (show here on left).
The Plyo (show on right) is a slimmer case that also lists for $40.
The Metropolis is a folio case with a slot for storing credit cards and cash (the Trooper also has a card holder). The extra-tough Monarch Series costs $60 (£48 or AU$78 converted, free worldwide shipping).
We've always liked PureGear's DualTek cases and their added corner protection. Now the DualTek comes in a Clear version with a translucent back that's available in blue, black and pink trim colors for $35.
Rokform makes cases with an integrated dual mounting system, with both the RokSafe magnet and RokLock that's compatible with Rokform's line of mount accessories for bikes, motorcycles, cars and more. Its Crystal Case has a slimmer design than its Rugged Case and starts at $50 (£40 or AU$65 converted). Available in multiple color options, it includes a magnetic car-mount and magnetic lanyard accessories.
Here are its key specs, according to Rokform:
Dual compound, six-sided protection Thin design keeps small feel of the deviceShock absorbing soft inner liner Tough outer polycarbonate shell BAM CNC machined aluminum magnetic mount BAM magnetic grip (mount your phone to almost any magnetic surface) Simple snap-in installation Works with all Rokform RokLock accessories
This is Rokform's Rugged Case, which also starts at $50 (£40 or AU$65 converted) and is available in multiple color options. Like the Crystal, it includes a magnetic car mount and magnetic lanyard accessories.
Thanks to decent designs and affordable prices, Korean company Spigen has sold thousands (probably millions) of phone cases on Amazon. Its Ultra Hybrid is its simple clear case, selling for around $12 (£9 or AU$11 on sale).
It also comes in a Rugged Folio version for $60 (approximately £45 or AU$80), which features three slots inside the cover to store a couple of credit cards and some money. Also available in brown or black.
If you want room for even more credit cards and cash, you could opt for the $80 Nomad Tri-Folio (approximately £65 or AU$105).
Another popular slim case from Spigen, the Liquid Crystal is an inexpensive clear case that costs $11 (about £9 or AU$15 converted). The XS Max version costs a bit more. It's not all that protective but it will appeal to folks who want a "barely there" slim case.
Casetify's line of iPhone XS and XS Max cases start around $35 and go up to around $50. They're relatively slim, sleek-looking cases that offer a decent protection and come in a variety of design patterns. They're worth checking out but they should cost a little less.
Moshi has always made nice iPhone cases, and it has some new designs for the new iPhones, including the Altra (shown here), which features a detachable wrist strap. Its new folio cases -- the Overture, StealthCover and SenseCover -- are also worth checking out, and I like the new Vesta. (We're still waiting on samples for some of these models as some of Moshi's new cases aren't available quite yet).
Portland-based Grovemade produces some beautifully crafted wooden cases. Its $59 wood bumper cases are the most affordable, but naturally I'm a fan of its Walnut and Leather Wallet case, which retails for a mere $129 (as a new customer you do get 10 percent off). It's one of the lighter, more refined looking wallet cases you'll find, and also comes in a lighter maple color.
Scooch bills its Wingman ($45, £32 or roughly AU$55 converted) as a five-in-one case. That's because the slap-bracelet style bendable kickstand not only props your phone up horizontally and vertically but is supposed to allow you to grip your phone more easily, "eliminating pinky fatigue" and serves as an air vent mount in your car. Finally the case is also a case -- and a pretty protective one.
It's available in multiple color options, including black and clear.
If you want the "official" case, Apple's swanky Leather Folio is available in peony pink, Cape Cod blue, forest green, black and red starting at $99, £99 or AU$145 for the XS version. The XS Max version is $30 more, which seems incredibly expensive. With a built-in screen cover, it's designed to fully protect the iPhone XS and XS Max's OLED displays that are expensive to replace if they crack.
Other Apple case option include its more standard iPhone X Silicone ($39, £39, AU$59) and iPhone X Leather ($49, £49, AU$75) cases. They come in a variety of new color options.
Skech's Vortex is a pretty interesting case. It has 360-degree rotating ring holder that converts into a kickstand, as well as a built-in metal plate for the included magnetic air-vent car mount. It's available in black and gold for $45, though you can get the older iPhone X version (which should fit the XS) for $23 at Amazon.
OtterBox's signature Defender Series tough cases return for the iPhone XS and XS Max in multiple color options lists for $50 but can be had online for less than $30. The XS Max version costs $60 (£50 or AU$90).
Incipio makes a bunch of iPhone X cases. I like the Reprieve Sport ($40 -- £30 or AU$45), a translucent case with a colored bumper and reinforced corners (it's drop-tested to 12 feet). It comes in three color options.
Nodus is making some luxurious leather cases for the iPhone X in both folio and nonfolio options. This is the Shell Case II, which comes in more standard colors like black and brown but is pictured in teal. It's $60 or £45 (about AU$75). It includes the magnetic Micro Dock II that allows you to mount the your phone anywhere. The Shell Case II will be available in October.
The Wallet Slayer Vol. 2 Card Case (formerly known as the CM4) has been around for a while and now it comes in an iPhone XS and XS Max versions in multiple color options. It formerly cost $35, but it's come down in price and is now $25 -- £22 or AU$30 converted. It's also worth mentioning that the case is set up to use a credit card as a kickstand for watching videos.
Caseology is another company that sells affordable, stylish cases direct on Amazon. It has a few different versions of the same case but with different textured backs. This one's called the Apex and comes in a few different colors for $15 (£12 or AU$20 converted). I also like the Parallax ($15).
Mujjo makes a couple of slick-looking slim leather cases for the iPhone X that come in black, gray and tan. The Wallet version pictured here costs $50, while the non-wallet version costs $45. I'd like to see Mujjo do a folio case.
Swedish startup 15:21 makes natural cork cases and wallets that give your phone a unique look and feel. These are slim cases that aren't incredibly protective. (You can read the story behind the 15:21 company name here).
I've tried the iPhone X version of the case and like it. 15:21 cases for the iPhone XS, XS Max and XR are coming soon (they are currently listed as sold out on the site).
The price should be around 39 euros, with free shipping around the world. That converts to about $46, £35 or $AU54.
Incipio has a set of Under Armour-branded cases for the iPhone XS and XS Max, including new version of its Protect Stash case that has a hidden compartment to store credit cards or money. It costs $45 and comes in multiple color options.
Otterbox's Symmetry Series comes in a few Disney branded options, including the Star Wars Galactic Collection. I like the newer "Stolen Plans" and "Boba Fett" cases but there are plenty more options. The XS version is $45 while the XS Max goes for $55.
Element made its mark with high-end iPhone cases that featured aerospace-grade aluminum and cost over $200. It still makes those crazy expensive cases but now it has a line of more affordable plastic cases that include the $40 Shadow (left) and $30 Illusion (right). Both are available in multiple color options and offer solid protection.
What's nice about Scooch's Wingpro ($40) is that it has a piece of metal in it that allows it -- and your phone -- to adhere to a magnet mount in your car (or wherever). The case feels solid and has additional corner protection. It's also worth noting that the imbedded metal doesn't interfere with wireless charging.
The Wingmate ($45) is similar to the Wingpro but it's a little thicker and adds a flip-up door at the bottom that allows you to store a little money and a couple of credit cards. It, too, has an integrated piece of metal that makes the case adhere to magnetic mounts. Even though it's thicker, it's compatible with wireless charging pads. Thanks to a slot in the back, your credit card can be used as a kickstand to prop up your phone.
Bondir cases are nothing too fancy but they're decent, attractively designed cases that offer 6-ft./2m drop protection in slim designs. I tried the $30 Silver Mist case (left), which comes in a few different color options, and the $35 Leather Wallet (right).
The iPhone X, XS and XS Max may all have dual-lens cameras, but they're missing wide-angle and macro lenses. That's where companies like Hitcase and Olloclip come in. They sell lenses that you attach to your iPhone and expand your photography options.
As its name suggests, Hitcase has its roots in the case business, and it has a number of case options to choose from, including its simple Crio to its tougher Enduro, Shield, Pro and Splash cases.
New for 2019 is the Ferra, a leather-clad, stainless steel beveled case that offers 6-ft./2m drop protection in a slim package. It's compatible with Hitcase's magnetic lenses, including its new, improved Wide lens (I like the Superwide). The case costs $60 while the lenses go for $40. That's a little expensive, but sometimes Hitcase has bundle deals that brings the price down.