I’ve been a fan of Urban Armor Gear, or UAG as they are more commonly known, and their cases for several years. Their products tend to have interesting designs and provide excellent protection without excessive bulk. When you are a fan of large iPhones, that is a very important feature. Another thing that I really like about UAG is that their products tend to be reasonably priced considering the combination of quality design and visual appeal.
I’ve reviewed some of UAG’s heavier duty iPhone cases in the past, including entries in the Pathfinder, Monarch, Civilian and Plasma series. This year I decided to take a look at something different. I really love the look of my new iPhone 12 Pro Max’s gold finish, so I’ve been keeping an eye out for cases that will show it off. I found UAG’s Mouve line of cases interesting because it offers translucent color options that also also provide more protection than the average clear iPhone case.
Before I go forward, let me point something out before you start looking at these pictures and scratching your head. I chose the Ash version of the Mouve case after looking at the pictures on the UAG website. Like I said above, I have been looking for clear and translucent cases for my new 12 Pro Max, but they can be a bit boring and this color seemed like it would add a more unique look.
The pictures on UAG’s site showed the Apple logo on the back coming through, so I didn’t think the color would be too dark to show any details of the phone. Unfortunately, the logo on the light colored back of my gold phone does not show through the case at all and you really can’t see the gold finish through it, either.
It’s really not a big deal, but if I had to do over again, I would have chosen the Ice version. Just be aware that the Ash version is more opaque than translucent and it really doesn’t show off the finish of the iPhone. Like most cases, it obscures it.
Beyond its color and relative lack of translucency, the first thing I noticed about this case was its unique design and shape. This design covers a few different considerations very effectively.
As you can see here, the back of the case almost looks warped at first. However, after a second of holding and using the case, it became very clear that this was an intentional design decision. Let’s break that down from the top, quite literally.
UAG’s Mouve case has beefed up corner protection, which is a big positive in my book. Both the top and bottom of the device are noticeably thicker. The corners are among the most vulnerable points on a smartphone when dropped, so the extra protection makes me feel more secure when using this case.
That extra thickness also provides an excellent buffer to protect the 12 Pro Max’s protruding camera lenses.
That camera bump gets bigger every year.
This also means that the case will sit flat on a surface, which is always a sign of a well-designed iPhone case.
The curvature across the back of the case also has a purpose. While UAG could have just made the case’s back thicker all the way across, I believe that the tapered middle is also a bit of intentional design. It makes the case fit in the hand quite nicely.
As I said at the outset, UAG is known for making cases that provide protection without unnecessary thickness. There’s never been an iPhone as big as the 12 Pro Max, so the tapered back isn’t trivial. It really does make this case a little easier to handle.
The back of the case also has a unique textured finish. It doesn’t feel overly rough or harsh, but there are numerous small surface “dots,” for lack of a better term. This makes the back of the case very easy to grip. It is yet another bit of protection that the Mouve provides against drops.
One common complaint I have with iPhone cases is that many don’t provide adequate protection for the screen. If the top and sides are completely flush with the phone, they won’t shield the screen at all from a drop. This is not the case with UAG’s Mouve.
As you can see, there is a tapered lip around the front of the device. It provides a little bit of extra protection from the screen striking a flat surface if your iPhone falls straight down. The case also has a little bit of extra protection at the corners of the screen. But on a good note, none of this gets in the way when using the device. That’s another example of a well thought out case design.
While I’ve talked about how the features of this case relate to drop protection, UAG designs for it and proves it by certifying that the Mouve case meets military protection standards, specifically MIL STD 810G 516.6. It means that this case has been test dropped 26 times at 48 inches with zero damage done to the device.
Moving on from function to form, while I mentioned earlier that the Ash version of the Mouve case wasn’t my favorite, don’t take that to mean that I don’t like the look of the case. I actually do. This model is somewhat conservative and visually minimalist, especially in comparison with some of UAG’s other case models. However, that’s not a bad thing, as a lot of users don’t want a case that stands out or makes a big statement.
The matte finished back and interesting shape do lend a small amount of flair and the translucent matte finish looks good. The Mouve is a smart choice for someone who wants a somewhat translucent case that’s a little more interesting than the average clear iPhone case.
That said, while it looks good, I do think UAG’s Mouve case is more about function than pure form. It’s thin and light, but it also adds enough protection to the most vulnerable parts of the iPhone to make you feel secure. UAG’s advertised drop testing just adds to that. The tapered design and added texture also make holding the device just a little easier. It’s a really well thought out and executed design that I can highly recommend, especially for anyone with an iPhone Pro Max. This design really suits the large iPhones well.
The Mouve case for the iPhone 12 Pro Max from UAG is available for a retail price of $39.95. The case is available in Ash, Aubergine, Ice, and Soft Blue finishes.
The Mouve case for the iPhone 12 Pro Max was provided for review on iPad Insight by UAG. For further information regarding our site’s review policies, please see the About page.