Best phone cases 2020: iPhones, Samsungs and other mobile devices

From wallet phone cases to ones with a built-in battery, here are some smartphone case options to help you protect that pricey smartphone.
Image: Cropped Hand Of Person Removing Phone Cover From Smart Phone Against Black Background
The best phone cases include protective, water-resistant phone cases and cases with built-in features like a battery or wallet.Aphiwat Chuangchoem / Getty Images/EyeEm
By Whitson Gordon

Our editors independently selected these items because we think you will enjoy them and might like them at these prices. If you purchase something through our links, we may earn a commission. Pricing and availability are accurate as of publish time. Learn more about Shop TODAY.

While the normal streetscape of masses staring down at their phones is less common these days, your smartphone is likely still one of your most used products on any given day. For one thing, it can be used for contact tracing, a typically smartphone app-driven effort during the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic that’s gotten the attention of tech giants like Google and Apple. And in using your smartphone, you may want to protect it — after all, you paid (or are paying through installments) good money for that phone, so you should treat it like the precious cargo that it is. If you choose to place your phone in a case, you’ve got lots of options, as you know if you’ve ever frequented any tech store or even online phone site. To help you navigate your options and how to shop for the best phone case out there, here are some of the best cases to protect your smartphone from scratches, dents or utter destruction.

Full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak

In this article

  1. Best protective phone case
  2. Best water-resistant phone case
  3. Best super thin and compact phone case
  4. Best flexible phone case
  5. Best phone case with a built-in battery
  6. Best wallet phone case

Best protective phone case: Otterbox

1. Otterbox Symmetry

When it comes to basic protection, there are more cases out there than we can count, but Otterbox has become somewhat synonymous with tough phone cases. Their flagship Defender series is probably overkill for most, but their Symmetry series hits a perfect sweet spot: It’ll protect your phone from most drops and ding, without being too overly bulky in your pocket. Best of all, it comes in a myriad of colors and patterns, allowing you to express your personality at the same time.

Best water-resistant phone case: Lifeproof

2. Lifeproof FRE

If you spend a lot of time at the pool, beach or hunched over a bathtub with splashing kids, Lifeproof has you covered with their FRE line of cases. Available for a number of phones, the Lifeproof FRE seals your phone in a shell with a built-in screen protector so it won’t get wet. Even if your phone claims to be highly water-resistant, I wouldn’t trust it near water without some extra protection.

Best super thin and compact phone case: totallee

3. totallee Thin Case

If you hate the bulk of a case but want to protect your phone from scratches, totalee’s Thin case might be the perfect option for you. It’s so thin, it barely feels like there’s anything there — which is perfect for case-haters. Just don’t expect it to save you from a hard drop on pavement.

Best flexible phone case: Spigen

4. Spigen Liquid Air

If you want something slim but need a bit of extra protection, the Spigen Liquid Air strikes an incredible perfect balance between a sleek frame and flexible, shock-absorbing protection, with a comfortable shape and a textured back that feels perfect in your hands.

Best phone case with a built-in battery: mophie

5. mophie Juice Pack

If your phone’s battery can’t quite get you through a long day of Facebooking and gaming, a battery pack can help eke out a few more hours — or you could attach that extra battery right to your phone with the Mophie Juice Pack. When your phone’s battery gets low, you can turn the case on and charge your phone right back up from your pocket. The new Juice Pack Access allows you to use wired headphones and other peripherals while charging your phone wirelessly, while the slightly bulkier Juice Pack Air plugs into your phone with an integrated Lightning or USB connector.

Best wallet phone case: Nomad

6. Nomad Rugged Folio

Why carry your phone in one pocket and your wallet in another when you could save some space and smush them together? The Nomad Rugged Folio has a classy leather look that will age over time and a folio-style cover that flips open to reveal your credit cards and cash. There’s also a tri-fold version if you need more space — if Nomad doesn’t make a version for your phone, the Otterbox Strada is another favorite of mine.

More shopping guides and recommendations

Find the latest from NBC News Shopping guides and recommendations.

Download the NBC News app for full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak.