Reviews

Check out Nomad’s new leather 3rd-gen AirPods case

I feel like I should own a motorcycle to have cool leather goods like this

If you picked up a pair of Apple’s new AirPods (3rd-gen) earlier this week and you’re looking for a leather case, Nomad’s Rugged Case is stellar.

Unlike MobileSyrup’s case-dependent Patrick O’Rourke, I don’t often use cases to protect my devices. If it’s a new phone, I’ll keep it in a case for as long as I can, but over time that itch to feel its pure, unaltered form becomes irresistible, and I disrobe the phone to hold it in my hand the way the gods of Silicon Valley intended.

For AirPods and other wireless earbuds, covering the tiny charging case with a second case, making it larger, always seemed a bit out of line with my efficiency-focused pocket regime. However, I’ve definitely been tempted by unique AirPods case covers in the past.

On the one hand, the AirPods case’s plastic easily scratches, and since I may need to take pictures of them for work in the future, a case makes a lot of sense. And as much as the efficient side of my brain tells me to take it off and save space — scratches be dammed — during my time with Nomad’s leather case, I’ve barely noticed the added bulk.

While there may be environmental concerns regarding the use of leather, there’s no denying that the classic material looks just as lovely as it did on cowboy boots in the 1800s. Nomad even claims that the case gets a nice leather patina over time to give it a more lived-in look. You can take a peek at Patrick’s AirPods Pro case here to see how it looks after over a year of use. The Nomad case also includes a little cutout that allows you to use a wrist strap to add even more style to the case if you want.

It also really feels like it’s protecting the AirPods, but I’m not sure how much it would truly help in the case of a drop. However, once you secure the top of the case with the thin strip of double-sided tape inside, the case stays on the AirPods even when you drop them. There’s also a small hole in the front of the case, allowing you to see see the light and a dimple where the button is located on the back of the case.

Ok, so maybe the Nomad Rugged Case isn’t as big as I thought.

The only hidden issue with the case is that it disables MagSafe making the AirPods case no longer stick to most compatible accessories. You can still attach it to the charger, but it needs to be on a pretty shallow angle. Other wireless chargers will also charge through the case.

Nomad’s new 3rd-gen AirPods case really does feel great to hold, and the warmth from the leather looks and feels a lot better than plastic, but at $34.99 USD (roughly $48.15 CAD), it definitely should.

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