Have you ever wanted an iPhone case that looks like a pair of Crocs? You know, the ugly-but-comfy slip-on shoes covered in holes that you can optionally decorate with colorful push-pins? You haven’t? Well, apparently some designer at smartphone case maker Casetify saw a pair of Crocs and thought to themselves, wow, that would make for a great iPhone case!!
No, we’re not kidding.
Casetify this month launched a new series of iPhone cases that look exactly like Crocs shoes, complete with their trypophobia-inducing holes and sets of pushpin decorations that allow you to personalize your phone case with things like flowers, rainbows, smiley faces and…uhhh…a stick of butter. A piece of toast. A snail. A motel keychain??
I’m sorry, but what the actual **** is going on here?
These cases are selling for $52!
While TechCrunch doesn’t typically cover smartphone cases or accessories, when we saw this new product line we knew we had to make an exception because of its truly oddball nature. Is this press release a prank? Is this an early April Fool’s? Vaporware? Have we time-traveled to the 1980s for new product ideas?
We regret/are happy to inform you that these cases are real. We have them in hand and have put them through their paces.
Here’s what we can report. The cases themselves come in black, lavender, cream and pink. They’re soft and flexible with their silicone finishings, as described. They also have bumpers on the corners and the promised raised bezel to help protect the screen. Casetify says they provide up to 4 feet of drop protection.
But of course, no one is buying these cases for their protection capabilities. They’re buying them for the “aesthetic” if they’re buying them at all.
Available only for iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max, the cases have either 13 to 14 holes designed to hold the pushpins. These are sold in sets of five pins that sell for $22 — this is not a cheap joke to participate in!
At launch, there are four main sets available: a “cottage core” set with a mushroom, snail, strawberry, flower and duck; a “retro west” set with a Dalmatian-spotted cowboy hat, matchbox, cowboy boot, motel keychain and 70s-looking happy-faced flower (no, I don’t know how the flower is western either); a “diner breakfast” set with the aforementioned butter and toast, a smiley face, checkered heart and the text “thank you!” as you’d find on your diner check; and the “peace love earth” set with a teddy bear, heart-shaped world, happy-faced daisy, yin yang symbol and happy rainbow.
There is also a Limited Edition “Barbie” set with pink Barbie pushpins like Barbie’s face, brand, jacket, heart-shaped glasses and the year “1959.”
That one sells for $82! Eighty…two…dollars.
I don’t even…why?!?…
We asked Casetify how it came up with this um, “unique,” idea.
The company told us that it’s designed many innovative products over the past few years, like its mirror cases, pillow cases and bounce cases, and it thought these new pushpin cases would simply offer its customers “new ways to express themselves with their everyday tech.”
“The first pin sets we’ve produced were developed with our best-selling prints in mind, and also taking into account trending products among Gen Z and millennials,” a spokesperson said.
When we asked what was the deal with the butter, they noted, “might be shocking to know that food-related items sell really well haha!”
Okay, but butter? Really? Is that because of that viral butter bench? Have phone cases now tied themselves to niche TikTok trends?
Plus, there’s the cottage core set that’s also seemingly inspired by the internet trend that romanticizes country life and living in harmony with nature — an aesthetic that grew in popularity thanks to TikTok’s subcommunities driven by its personalized algorithms. Now it’s jumped from the screen into your pocket.
In any event, despite having giant pins sticking out of the back of the case, it wasn’t too hard to shove the decorated case into your pocket or pull it out. The cases and the pins are fairly smooth, so while they tug a little on your clothes, it ends up not really getting any more stuck than, say, your Popsockets grip, for example.
Meanwhile, actually decorating the case with pins wasn’t too difficult either. Pushing the pins in did require a little effort, particularly on the bottom row for some reason, but once in they felt fairly secure.
The pins can be mixed and matched based on your mood, Casetify says, but the debut selections were fairly limited. Of course, we had to try jamming some Crocs Jibbitz (aka Crocs pins) into the holes of the case just to see. After all, if the cases supported Jibbitz, that would have opened up a wide array of customization options! But sadly, the rounded-backed Jibbitz we had on hand — these sparkly Hello Kitty charms — were just too large. Bummer.
Casetify says it’s planning to release more pin sets and cases in the future, including through upcoming brand collaborations, like the one it did a few months ago with Barbie, which precipitated the Push-In case line. We don’t know which aesthetic community will be next to get the pushpin treatment, but there are plenty of “-cores” to choose from.