Google’s new Pixel 2 phones have an assortment of third-party cases made specifically for them. However, Google has also gone ahead and designed a few of their own. The one I decided to get to go along with my current 2 XL is the fabric case that they offer. I’ve been using it daily now for about two weeks and here are my thoughts.
Design and feel
This case speaks it. It’s coated with a beautiful fabric material which Google claims to be made of polyester and nylon knit while incorporating a polycarbonate core. The material is soft and feels great to the touch. The grip is good, and the case isn’t bulky at all to the point where it takes away the looks of the phone. In fact, it’s almost the exact opposite.
There are precise cutouts for the fingerprint sensor, camera, and all the ports and buttons. The fingerprint sensor cutout isn’t too deep and is easy to find. The camera cutout is designed to prevent the Pixel 2’s camera bump, so resting the phone on a table now is completely flat. The only minor issue (or annoyance) that I found was that dirt or dust will often accumulate around the edges of this area which may provoke you to remove the case to wipe it clear. Fortunately, this case is just as easy to take off as it is to pop back on. Towards the bottom back of the case, there’s a silicone “G” logo embedded into the material.
Along the side of the case, you’ll find buttons for the power and volume rocker. The power button appears to made of plastic, but it certainly looks nice. As for the volume rocker, Google has decided to do something a bit different with it. The volume buttons are covered with the case’s fabric material which flows over them. Personally, I absolutely love it. It adds a nice touch to the case while also making it easy to locate them. And of course: both buttons are just as clicky and tactile as ever.
The bottom “lip”
The bottom “lip” of the case is certainly the weakest and unfortunate part of this case. Not only does it offer little protection in the event of a drop, but it also does not make plugging in the Pixel 2’s charger any easier. Had the case covered all of the bottom part of the phone up to or around the USB-C port, scratches could be reduced and the charging port could be easier to locate when plugging in. I know that Google probably went with this move to achieve maximum compatibility with various accessories, but nonetheless, it’s definitely the lowest point of this case.
That’s it. That’s just about as much drop protection that you’re going to get with this case. Based on Google’s numbers here, the case’s lip is only 0.1 in (2.8 mm) for the Pixel 2 XL and 0.2 in (3.9 mm) for the Pixel 2. If you’re buying this case, you’re obviously not going to get any heavy duty protection out of it.
I’m a slim case kind of guy, and this case is just perfect for me. It offers a fair amount of protection for its size and doesn’t add much bulk. The whole selling point of it is its looks. The material looks excellent, and while Google warns that the “fabric may stain,” the carbon color definitely hides them better. However, you can also hand wash it if need be.
And then comes the price. It’s a first party accessory, and it’s priced like one. $40 is quite on the high end for cases. Is it worth $40? No. Do I recommend it? Absolutely. It’s just one of those things where the product is clearly overpriced, but it’s just too good to pass up.