Trust Fall! Catalyst has your back.
Like a pair of house slippers, a comfortable armchair, or a favorite pair of jeans, most of us have those items that we rely upon for comfort. This past September, when Apple announced the latest iterations of their iPhone, I looked to Catalyst to protect my investment. The Catalyst Impact Protection Case for the iPhone 11 Pro Max arrived in an energetic 4 3/8 inches wide by 7 1/2 inches tall by 9/16 inches thick retail package. My eye was immediately drawn to the centralized, obliquely angled, raised, glossy image of the 4 inches tall by 1 13/16 inches wide retail case. Instead of a flat image, Catalyst captured the moment of impact with a and crater formation with a rocky surface. The white Catalyst name starkly contrasted against the black background, similar to the white/orange product title and 9.9ft Drop Proof status. Along the bottom of the panel, the company added three icons, which promoted the 9.9ft/3 meter drop rating, the Impact Truss system, and the 38-gram feather lightweight phone case status. Along the top left of the panel, Catalyst provided a clear plastic window that allowed me to see the top border of the red-colored case.
Examining the right-side panel, I was pleased to find a life-sized side view of the Catalyst Impact case. The slightly raised, 0.43″ inches thick (7/16″) side view of the glossy image provided useful insight into the quality of the case. I liked that I was able to visualize the rotating mute switch, as well as the volume up/down buttons. I rotated the packaging to the other side, hoping to see the power on button, but did not find an image of the side of the case. Instead, I found Facebook, Twitter, Instagram icons, #CatalystCase and a small Wrist Lanyard Included icon. The back panel provided an exploded diagram of the case, detailing six features: Impact Truss System, Rotating Mute Switch, Non-Slip Rubber, Wireless Charging Through Case, Drop Proof 9.9 Ft/3meter, Blocks dust and debris. Along the bottom of the exploded diagram, Catalyst included the same information in Spanish, Italian, German, Japanese, Traditional Chinese, and Simplified Chinese.
I slid the inner black plastic tray out of the packaging and removed the 1.26 ounce red-rimmed, clear-backed Catalyst Case. I inserted the right side of my iPhone 11 Pro Max into the case and then pressed the top and left sides into the case. The right side of the Impact Protection Case had two black ribbed buttons for the volume up and down buttons and a useful volume toggle. Unlike the narrow volume toggle access port that other cases provide, one of my favorite features of Catalyst cases has to be the clicky volume toggle. Along the bottom of the case, you will find a 7/16 inches long by 1/4 inches tall lightning port and two speaker ports (3/8 inches wide by 1/8 inches tall and 5/8 inches long by 1/8 inches tall). Along the left side of the case, you will find a 5/16 inches long by 1/8 inches wide power button. Turning the case over, I was pleased with the red coloration against the clear plastic backing. Since I chose the Midnight Green Colored iPhone 11 Pro Max, I loved that the beauty of the phone was able to shine through the Catalyst Case. Similar to the protective front panel rim, the 1 1/8 inches wide by 1 3/16 inches tall camera cutout was encircled by a slightly raised red plastic rim.
As an added bonus, Catalyst included a bonus 7-inches long nylon wrist lanyard. To install the lanyard, simply insert the 1 3/4 inches long thin section into the small slit along the bottom left of the case. In addition to the ribbed volume up/down and power buttons, and the rubberized case material, the wrist lanyard added a significant degree of protection to the phone. Even though the Impact Protection case promised a MIL STD 810G 9.9-foot drop protection rating, I would rather prevent the drop in the first place. The raised rim along the front and back of the case should protect the screen/back and camera from directly contacting a surface. I did not knowingly/purposefully drop the phone to test the case. However, my ten-month-old daughter did manage to knock my case laden iPhone 11 Pro Max off of my kitchen table onto my hardwood floor. The phone dropped, like a rock, onto the lower right corner, bounced twice, and then landed flatly onto the back panel. After the sobering realization that my phone base jumped to its doom, I was able to debrief and to exhale when the phone survived unscathed.
I know that I cannot be the only person who stated “where is my phone, I just had it.” How often do we set our phones down somewhere, only to struggle to find them again a few minutes later. I have had to rely upon the ping feature of my Apple Watch more times than I would like to admit. It seems that standard iPhone colors blend into the surrounding backdrop and most dark cases enhance this problem. The bright red color of the Catalyst iPhone Impact Protection Case starkly contrasted with nearly every background that I placed the phone against. This feature allowed for quicker iPhone acquisition. I was pleased with the packaging experience, the case design, case color, clear backing, lightweight material of the case, and with the overall protective nature of the outer plastic shell.