Gear Review: Otterbox 1930 Case for the Blackberry 8700

I love discovering gear on the trail when crossing paths with another snowshoer. In this case, my fellow shoer was sporting an Otterbox case for his Palm Treo. And, not only was he using it to make some calls…he dropped it in the snow without a sudden gasp of “NNNooooo!!!” The case was waterproof…and indestructible (in the event the case was dropped off the side of a cliff). So, I naturally had to follow suit and get a case for my Blackberry.

I finally got my hands on an Otterbox 1930 case for my Blackberry 8700. And, it rocks! I love it. Although, I haven’t braved a voluntary throw into the snow, the indestructible features have been tested – thoroughly. I’m the kind of guy who treats gadgets with little to no respect – I throw them around and use them as blunt objects to ward-off mountain lions and people I don’t like (not really). The Otterbox case has come in handy when my Blackberry has been dropped – over and over again.

According to Otterbox, the case is “constructed of a polycarbonate/ABS shell for maximum strength and durability, cases provide grip and drop protection with innovative rubber overmolding.” Neat!

Functionally, it works great. My only complaint is that I can barely hear my calls (and my callers can scarcely hear me) without using a hands-free device. So, it’s vitally important to have that hands-free connection when using your Blackberry as it’s encased in the Otterbox 1930 – a normal thing for most Blackberry users anyway.

I was also amazed at how Otterbox managed to create a feature to handle the Blackberry thumb-wheel: It features a movable knob that can be directed to push the wheel up, down, or inwards (as to enter). Very cool.

I’m also enamored with the case’s keypad that overlays the Blackberry keypad. It’s accurate and I’ve yet to find a fault with pressing an incorrect key. I feel comfortable enough to send and receive e-mail while using the case.

And, just so you know, Blackberry 7200 users can also enjoy a case for their device – the Otterbox 1931 is your ticket.

Here are more features for the 1930 and 1931 models:

*Both the 1930 and 1931 have a MIL-STD 810F rating for drop and shock and an IP54 rating for heavy rain and dust intrusion.

*Cases available in black with grey rubber.

*Dimensions for the OtterBox 1930 are 4.85 in [123 mm] long by 3.36 in [85 mm] wide and 1.46 in [37 mm] thick (not including latch) or 1.73 in [44 mm] thick (including latch). Case weighs 0.5 lb [.23 kg].

*The OtterBox 1931 measures 4.85 in [123 mm] long by 3.60 in [85 mm] wide and 1.54 in [37 mm] thick (not including latch) or 1.80 in [44 mm] thick (including latch). Case weighs 0.5 lb [.23 kg].

As you can probably imagine, the Otterbox 1930 and 1930 for the Blackberry are perfect for military and industrial use. But, for active snowshoers that like to bring along their Blackberrys (as do I), it’s exactly what’s needed.

For more information on the Otterbox 1930 and 1931 for the Blackberry, visit

About the author


Ryan Alford