Style is the name of the Incipio Faxion’s game [Review]

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Possibly the best reason for not getting a case for a Windows Phone is that a case easily hides the pleasant design that the creators of the phone intended for you to see and feel every time you use the device. You might be losing the soft-touch surfaces of the HTC 8X or, in my case, the blaze-red beauty of a Nokia Lumia 920. Of course, some people will need a case for its protection in the end, so the sacrifice is made.

Enter the Incipio Faxion (likely pronounced, “fashion”) case for the Lumia 920. It does nearly perfectly every job a user wants a case to do; it protects, it doesn’t impede anything, and it looks fantastic. So, does $34.99 get you your money’s worth?

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Even the packaging has that “I’m a big deal” feel to it; a plastic container, canned by a transparent, rubber-grommetted window, sealed with removable tape on the backside. Not a lot of manufacturers of anything bother to make their packages this interesting, to look at or to open. And I haven’t even gotten to the case itself yet.

Incipio has a way of making unique products not just among other companies, but within itself; look online for Faxion cases for other devices, and you’ll see that the company has taken on the responsibility of designing cases that truly match the aesthetics of the individual devices catered to. A Galaxy S3 Faxion case, for example, looks much more boisterous and curvy, versus the iPhone 5 Faxion, featuring much less colored matte surface to match the minimalism of that device’s architecture.

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The Faxion for the Lumia 920 seeks out a point in between flash and modesty. Two matte grey arms reach across a very glossy black surface, and the Incipio brand stems out from a squared-off camera region. The matte surface wraps around the entire front side of the device and completely covers the top and bottom.

The black is very reflective and, of course, fingerprint-attractive, yet it is as grippy, if not more so, than the naked gloss back of the 920. The matte surface is noticeably more slippery, but of course almost any dirt or fingerprints are hard to see on them. The contrast between the two surfaces, especially in bright light, as well as the setting of curved corners on a stocky, rectangular framework, make the Faxion case wonderful to look at.

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Much like the Speck Candyshell Grip case I reviewed in the past, the Faxion accomplishes its two-surface design via some patented co-molding tech. If you’ve already read that review, you know I was a little apprehensive until the case arrived at my door. The Candyshell Grip was something along the lines of a silicon material layered into a flexible hard plastic. The soft surfaces peeled away, the materials retained indentations and scratches, and so on.

I knew I was getting a quality product this time around when I opened the Incipio packaging. The materials, trademarked and patented by Incipio as Plextonium (the gloss surfaces) and Flex2O (impact-resistant matte surfaces), are very rigid, yet can flex easily enough that inserting and removing the phone is no serious struggle.

The edges of the case do raise slightly, barely, above the unprotected 920’s glass, but with my Zagg screen protector on, it is very hard to call. It likely wouldn’t be great for a perfectly-face-first drop, but not many cases can. Incipio also makes the DualPro for the Lumia 920, which has significant bezel-centric protection, and Ashley has that review covered.

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Otherwise, this case fits like a custom-molded glove. See that small, black “gap” underneath the headphone jack? That isn’t empty space; the inside of the case raises up to sit flush with the back of the phone. There is no give around the camera region, and there is only slightly some around the top and bottom of the phone, as one might expect from the more flexible and cut-through sections of the case.

There is only one major imperfection I can place. Along the right side of the screen, the edge of the case can’t form in a straight line; the hardware buttons push the case away from the device enough to see both the curving of the case, as a result, and the red surface of the phone underneath. I wonder if break-in time for the buttons are needed, or if the buttons could be manufactured with a little more height or a little more softness.

Speaking of the buttons, they remain easy to press through the case. You can feel the click of the volume rocker and lock button, but you do lose the feel of the half-press of the camera button. Holding the Lumia 920 horizontally, using only your right thumb and index finger (pressing the button), gives a good idea of how much pressure a half-press takes. Pressing it fully doesn’t take more strength than necessary for a case button, and especially not compared to the HHI DualArmor case.

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Conclusion: Buy, Try, or Cry?

Perhaps you might not see the point yet in paying much more than $20 for a protective case, but if you decide to buy the Incipio Faxion case for the Lumia 920, then trust me, you’ll get what you pay for. This case is of a design and attention-to-detail caliber that gives users the serious impression that this case will protect your device, live as long as you use it, and look good while doing it, too.

The Faxion is one of the best cases out there, both for protection and style. It comes in pink, white, and black, all three paired with the grey Flex2O material, and you can get it for $34.99 via their website, or $25.31 via Amazon. I’d highly recommend you do so.

[via Incipio]


  • Awesome job on this review, James! Looks like a great case.