Nomad has announced a new line of cases for the iPhone 12 made of Horween leather that include support for Apple’s MagSafe connectivity feature, and we’re moving at a glance.
The new cases look identical to Nomad’s original line of cases that debuted at the launch of the iPhone 12 line, but are complemented by the magnets necessary to support MagSafe. Both the standard Rugged Case and Folio enclosures have been updated, replacing non-MagSafe models.
With MagSafe, users can extend the functionality of their devices with a variety of add-ons. There are MagSafe-enabled wallets, a bit of MagSafe bracket, as well as fast 15 W magnetic chargers. Without integrated magnets, this MagSafe accessory would not be able to connect to the back of the device.
We received the cases a little early to try them out. The nomad line and the latest models are familiar to us from the outside and invisible. The only physical way to distinguish them is a circular seal on the casing of the microfiber housing. Unlike Apple cases that contain a plastic ring, the Nomad appears to have gone with an embossed recess.
During testing, we used Nomad cases with a MagSafe pack, several MagSafe ports, a Belkin car holder and an Apple wallet. There were no problems with any of the items we tried, they all worked exactly as we expected.
Nomad’s Horween leather is slightly smoother than Apple’s, which, at least here at first, has a little less grip than Apple’s wallet cases. Still, it’s more retention than directly on the back of the iPhone. Glass is always more slippery than leather.
One of Apple’s early warnings about MagSafe was that it could give indentations on the back of any case you used. Apple’s leather cases even have a copy of the image with indentations on them, so you can see what to expect before you buy them. Nomad cases will also have the same fate.
So far, we’ve noticed that the black case was getting a circular recess much faster than the brown model. Probably due to the extra color needed to achieve dark black versus brown, and it rubbed lightly as the MagSafe in turn spun. Personally, we don’t mind the look so much, and Nomad also tells us that it will loosen up a bit as the skin ages. Over time, it develops a large patina and makes the MagSafe sign less pronounced.
They don’t have Apple’s MFi certification logo, but they work almost identically. They contain a magnet ring to hold the bracket, charger and other peripherals and an alignment magnet used for accessories such as wallets so that they do not rotate when attached. One difference between these and Apple cases is that they do not include an NFC chip. When cases are placed on your iPhone 12, there is no animation on the screen like Apple’s initials. The NFC chip does not offer any other benefits, so we will not dwell on its exclusion.
Since the launch of the iPhone 12, there have been only a few cases that support MagSafe, and this has become a problem for MagSafe adoption. Users want to choose cases, but at this point they haven’t had many options if they want something other than what Apple offers. The nomads ’cases are fantastic in themselves and have gotten even better with the inclusion of MagSafe, but it’s also probably just the beginning of the flood gates that are starting to open.
The new MagSafe Nomad cases are now available through the company’s website for $ 59.95 (rough) and $ 79.95 (Rugged Folio) in black, brown and natural colors for all sizes of the iPhone 12 line.