The Samsung Galaxy Note8 is currently the brand’s most powerful phone in the market. At RM3,999 and consisting of glass on both its front and rear, the Note8 represents a substantial investment and unless you like living on the edge (pardon the pun), you’ll need to invest in some form of protective casing which is where Otterbox’s Symmetry case for the Galaxy Note8 comes into the picture.
The most affordable and lightest variant of the trio of Otterbox cases offered for the Note8, the Otterbox Symmetry is a one-piece protective case that comes with an inner layer of synthetic rubber bonded to an outer polycarbonate shell. The inner layer is textured with a crossweave-thatch pattern for a better grip and the rubber layer is soft enough to ensure that it doesn’t scratch the Note8’s glass backplate. Depending on what colour you chunk out for , the Symmetry case comes in a matte black all the way, a two-toned aquamarine and white finish and a two-toned purple and blue finish.
Ports are cut out at the base for the stylus, the USB Type C charging port, the rear camera, the speaker and the 3.5mm audio jack. The sides have raised buttons made of rubber that fit exactly onto the metal-hewn buttons of the Note8 as an extra protective measure.
Fitting the Note8 into the casing is a doddle and doesn’t require any fiddling or shoe-horning. It fits precisely. Removing it is a simple matter as well and just involves gaining purchase on one corner and then peeling it off.
Using the Galaxy Note8 Otterbox Symmetry case
When used over the course of a month, the Symmetry case proved to be a relatively comfortable carry without adding undue bulk to the Note8. The wide sized cutouts offered easy access to the charging port and the stylus. The modest thickness of the casing also has an unintended benefit of recessing the rear dual camera array deep enough to avoid unintended scratches.
The overall design of the Symmetry is clean, which goes a long way to ensure that it doesn’t snag on something when removed from your pocket. The matte textured finish of the casing also has the benefit of repelling fingerprints while offering some amount of grip to prevent the phone from slipping out accidentally from your hands.
Of note is that the top and bottom of the casing flanking the display have a slightly raised lip to protect the Note8 somewhat from face-down impacts. Unfortunately the nature of the Symmetry’s construction means that the display itself is not protected though you can add a third party screen protector or their Alpha Glass tempered glass as needed without undue trouble. It’s best to have a screen protector fitted with the Symmetry on to ensure a proper fit.
The biggest quibble with the Symmetry is the squishy nature of the buttons. Attempting to press the Bixby, power and volume buttons requires extra pressure to do so; it’s not a deal breaker but it’s irksome when you have to do it several dozen times a day. An accidental drop from waist height onto concrete with the Symmetry casing on proved its worth and the casing shrugged off the impact and kept the phone intact.
Price and Conclusion
The Otterbox Symmetry case for the Note8 isn’t the cheapest thing on the block at RM199 compared to the vanity casings festooning the market but what you pay for is peace of mind to protect an RM5,000 investment. If you can live with the somewhat squishy buttons, the Symmetry is a hard-wearing, well made casing that will ensure your Note8 remains in one piece for years to come. In Malaysia, the Symmetry case can be acquired at their official store on Lazada and 11street or via their official distributor KWS Distribution.
What we liked Easy to install and remove, slim, cut-outs provide easy access to stylus and charging port
What we didn’t Squishy buttons
We say The Otterbox Symmetry is a slim, highly protective option for the Galaxy Note8 that is easy to deploy though you’ll need to invest in a separate screen protector for all-round protection.
*Review unit courtesy of Otterbox Asia