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I’ve been looking for a functional wallet/iPhone case hybrid for years. The allure of carrying -- and keeping track of -- one fewer item would simplify my life, and putting some decent protection on my phone wouldn’t suck. At first glance, the BookBook by Twelve South seemed like the answer to my prayers. However, after using it for a month straight, I really wish I’d prayed just a little bit harder.
Right out of the gate, it’s apparent that the BookBook isn’t for everyone. Simply put, it can hardly carry anything at all. I went from a wallet filled with cards for Starbucks, Costco, and several other stores to a slick, streamlined five-card setup -- a total that I couldn’t compromise any further on. Unfortunately for me, Twelve South pegs the BookBook’s maximum capacity at a measly four cards.
Even worse, a few weeks after first breaking in the wallet/case, the flimsy cloth that separated the cards from the cash compartment ripped wide-open, making retrieving cash from the BookBook a royal pain. Twelve South’s small print, which says that the BookBook can “comfortably stash three to four” cards, should be taken extremely literally. Add a fifth, and you risk ruining the expensive and beautiful case.
The bottom line. The BookBook truly requires a lifestyle change. If you’re dedicated to form over function, love leather, and can cut down to a wallet with only four thin cards (thick keycards and wads of cash are out), a new wallet-less lifestyle can be a blessing in simplicity. Unfortunately, I couldn’t quite make the cut. The BookBook is a lovely iPhone case, but a wallet that can’t hold your cash is not something I’m willing to put my money into.
BookBook for iPhone
iPhone 4, four cards, next to no cash
Simplifying your life. Keeps your iPhone safe. Gorgeous. Smells of sweet, sweet leather. Quite a conversation starter.
High price. Limits the number of cards you can carry. Started tearing after a month of use.