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The Best iPhone 14 Cases So Far

This story is part of Focal Point iPhone 2022CNET’s collection of news, tips and advice around Apple’s most popular product.

For the iPhone 14, Apple did a little something different. The smaller Mini size is gone, and now there are two sizes of the standard iPhone 14, along with two sizes of the iPhone 14 Pro. Both lines now come in 6.1- and 6.7-inch sizes: The iPhone 14 and the larger iPhone 14 Plus, as well as the iPhone 14 Pro and the larger iPhone 14 Pro Max (both of which boast extra cameras, always-on screens and the unique “Dynamic Island” display feature). Each model has its own specific case, so make sure you’re getting the correct case to fit your particular iPhone 14 model.

As always, when it comes to any new iPhone, you have a wide assortment of cases to choose from that will help protect it from dents and dings, and most importantly, prevent your screen and glass back from cracking. Here are some of the best case options for all the iPhone 14 models in a variety of styles from slimmer to more rugged cases. While we haven’t tried them all yet, we have experience using earlier versions of the cases for the iPhone 13 — that’s what we’re basing our initial recommendations on. We’ll follow up with hands-on feedback on the iPhone 14 versions soon.

Read More: Best MagSafe and Magnetic Wireless Chargers for Apple iPhone 14

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Speck has brought many of its iPhone 13 case designs to the iPhone 14, including such popular transparent models as the Presidio Perfect-Clear and Perfect-Clear Grips, and the Presidio2 Pro. Speck’s cases with built-in MagSafe cost around $50, while its Candyshell Pro case remains the least expensive at around $25 but does not have MagSafe.

All the new models have good drop protection (13 to 16 feet, depending on the model) as well as Speck’s Microban antimicrobial protection. No matter which model you choose, Speck often gives a discount for first-time buyers.

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Cyrill is a sister brand to Spigen, and its cases are arguably slightly more stylish, although they cost a few bucks more. I like the UltraColor Mag ($25), and the Kajuk Mag ($27) is also pretty nice, owing to its faux “vegan” leather back. The transparent Shine Mag ($30) cases are attractively designed with “a touch of sparkle” for those who like a bit of flash in their iPhone case.

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MagSafe cases can get pretty pricey, but if you’re looking for an inexpensive clear MagSafe case for your new iPhone 14 series phone, Spigen’s Ultra Hybrid MagFit is a good value at around $25. Spigen also sells a non-Mag version of this case for about $8 less, and also has several other iPhone 14 case options.

Read More: Best Phones to Buy for 2022

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OtterBox made a name for itself with its super-protective Defender series case, but most people want something less bulky these days. I like the Symmetry Series Plus cases, which come in various shades (including the new Euphoria color) and have MagSafe. The Symmetry Plus Pop case integrates PopSockets PopGrip and is wireless charging-compatible, which is important. OtterBox offers a discount for first-time buyers on its site.

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Caseology has made some decent budget cases in the past, including the NanoPop, Parallax, Skyfall and Vault. Its new Capella Mag Clear is one of the cheaper transparent Magsafe cases we’ve seen.

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British case-maker Gear4, now owned by Zagg, makes cases that are right up there with OtterBox and Speck, all of them lined with the company’s D3O shock-absorbing material and featuring beveled edges to protect your phone. I like the new Milan Snap (pictured) and Santa Cruz Snap, both of which are MagSafe-equipped and rated for 13-foot drop protection. However, several other case styles are available, most of them with eye-catching designs. They start at $30 for non-MagSafe cases, but most MagSafe models list for $50 to $60.

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Nomad’s line of leather cases comes to the iPhone 14. However, now Nomad is offering two grades of leather — the standard variety and a higher-end Horween that costs $20 more ($70 rather than $50). At least the Horween version is designed to develop a “rugged” patina as the oils from your skin interact with the leather over time. The new Modern Leather Case is available in black, brown, English tan and a lighter natural color that I like. They’re rated for 10-foot (3-meter) drop protection and equipped with MagSafe. Meanwhile, the Modern Leather Folio goes for $60 in black or brown.

There’s also a more-affordable Sport version for $40 that’s equipped with MagSafe as well (it’s not a leather case, however, but does look pretty slick). Additionally, Nomad has a new Rugged Case with “fortified” bumpers and 15-foot drop protection that costs $50 with MagSafe.

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Casetify has three base models that you can customize with any of Casetify’s eye-catching stock designs or something more personal (like your name). New to the line is the Bounce case, which offers even more corner protection than the Ultra Impact case (both of which are MagSafe-enabled). Some of the designs are hit-or-miss, and many are geared towards teenagers.

I should note that prices appear to have gone up again. Casetify cases now start at $68 (yes, that’s high), although we should see some discounts.

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Rokform’s been making tough iPhone cases for years, and aside from their durability, their key feature is the ability to use them with various mounts — including bike and motorcycle mounts — that are sold separately. I personally prefer the Crystal series, but the Rugged case is slightly more, well, rugged. The new iPhone 14 cases are also MagSafe compatible.

Rokform’s iPhone 14 cases have removable magnets, and they’re compatible with wireless charging if you remove the included center magnet. “With the lower magnet still intact, you can still charge wirelessly while using magnetic mounting and all of our mounts,” Rokform says.

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Tech21 has a range of iPhone 14 cases, including its popular Evo Check (pictured), which is equipped with MagSafe for $50. There are also several other cases to choose from, including the ultraprotective Evo Max, which is rated for 20-foot drops and has a slide cover to protect the iPhone 14’s back cameras, along with a holster you can clip to your belt.

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Smartish’s affordable, simple, slim cases and wallet cases return for the iPhone 14. The Wallet Slayer 2.0 case (pictured) comes in a few different designs, including the Groovy color shown here. It holds three credit cards plus cash, and you can use one of your credit cards as a kickstand. However, its one downside is that it is not compatible with wireless and MagSafe chargers.

Smartish also sells a MagSafe case called the Gripzilla. It’s one of the most affordable MagSafe cases and is easy to grip, as its name implies.

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Like Lifeproof, Catalyst made a name for itself with waterproof cases, but it now focuses on standard protective case options and has two new models for the iPhone 14: the $60 Influence (pictured) is my favorite, but the new $50 Crux case is also good (both are MagSafe-enabled). They have perforations on the corners that allow you to attach various accessories (a lanyard is included, but Catalyst also sells other accessories). Both have 10-foot drop protection.

FAQs

How protective of an iPhone 14 case should I buy?

I personally like cases that aren’t too thick but offer decent drop protection, with a lip over the edge of the screen (sometimes referred to as a “screen bumper”) and raised corners that help prevent your screen from cracking if your phone should fall face down. A folio case will more fully protect your screen.

The good news is that you don’t have to buy a super-protective iPhone 14 case like the OtterBox Defender to get good protection. Most cases are reasonably thin and still offer at least 6-foot drop protection. I did include one very thin case on this list for those who prefer minimal protection. Before you go with a case like that, just remember how much your phone costs — but it’s better than having no case at all. Make sure you get a sound tempered glass screen protector for your iPhone 14 model to prevent deep scratches and safeguard the screen.

Should I get a MagSafe case for my iPhone 14?

All the iPhone 14 models are equipped with Apple’s MagSafe feature, which offers faster wireless charging with compatible chargers. It also supports optional accessories — including Magsafe wallet, mini wallets and various mounts — that adhere magnetically to the back of your phone. Like the iPhone 13, the iPhone 14 has “an array of magnets” (Apple says they’re recycled) embedded around a charging coil that can pull up to 15 watts of power.

However, if you want to use those MagSafe accessories without taking your phone out of its case, you need a phone case that’s equipped with MagSafe support. The MagSafe symbol is a circle with a short pipe below it. You can see it on clear cases, but it’s embedded on the inside of the case so if it’s nontransparent, you’ll only see it from the inside.

If you already have a MagSafe accessory — or plan on buying MagSafe accessories in the future — you’ll want to get a MagSafe compatible case; it’s a good option to have. With that in mind, the majority of the cases in this roundup are equipped with MagSafe.

Are MagSafe cases more expensive?

In general, yes — about $10 more. There are some more affordable MagSafe cases that cost around $20, but most cost upwards of $30. We see cases from certain companies that are essentially the same, but one has MagSafe and the other doesn’t, and the MagSafe version usually sells for $10 more. It may seem like a little too much to pay for something that doesn’t seem like much of an upgrade, but in time MagSafe compatibility may command less of a “tax.”

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