OtterBox just took a major step toward shedding its image of a fat and bulky phone case manufacturer.
The Fort Collins, CO-based company has partnered with a host of manufacturers to launch its next generation of smartphone cases that promise to do a lot more than protect a mobile device.
The new range of "uniVERSE" cases, which are compatible with the iPhone 6 series, comes with a swappable modular structure, which can essentially be accessed for attaching custom-built accessories, such as a Square reader, a USB flash drive, a Bluetooth speaker, a selfie stick or a battery pack. Currently, the company is selling the modular case for $49.95 and attachments for prices varying between $19.99 and $299.
The company's move into selling customizable cases comes as the smartphone case market continues to grow even more saturated with too many local and international players in the space.
The company's partnership with Square offers a $50 Square contactless and chip card reader module that fits into the back of the uniVERSE case. The attachment conjoins the two use cases and has the potential of finding a big buyer base among SMBs that interchange the device functionality from personal to business use.
The company has also partnered with SanDisk to offer its iXpand Flash Drive, in capacities varying from 32GB to 128GB.
Other major partnerships include one with Olloclip, which offers swappable zoom, wide-angle and fish-eye lenses for the iPhone camera. Another partnership, which led to the development of a unique product, is with PolarPro, which is extending modular attachments that can quickly turn into a tripod.