If you’ve been waiting for an Ice View case, but haven’t wanted to spend $49.99 on an Ice View case from HTC, there’s a less expensive knock off that looks basically the same that I picked up from Amazon for about $7.50 and functionally seems equivalent.

So you know, Ice View is a minimized  large font high contrast screen mode that displays through the case while your phone is locked, and the case is manufactured such that you can interact without opening. All it’s basically useful for is seeing when someone’s calling, seeing the time, maybe seeing the last text message.

The A-store version of this case, which I’m not sure if is the brand name or the product name as there is no manufacturer name on the box that I can locate, is a flip phone case with a small magnet on the front to activate Ice View mode and a clear plastic back.

It should be noted in the included photos that I was not aware until a day or so later that there was a plastic scratch-prevention covering over the plastic on the back. As such it’s clearer than in the photos and does not have a manufacturer part number. It should also be noted that the back is clear plastic, not black as shown in the Amazon product page.

There are two things I dislike about this case, and I’m not sure if I’d find them less egregious with an official case or not. The first is that the magnetic trigger is silver, not black like is shown in the product previews. Not a huge thing, but it’s not quite the product I thought I was getting. A marker would take care of that.

The second thing is the cover. It’s designed to transmit touch, but it also seems thoroughly grippy. I’m not sure if this is electrostatic pass through working, or inexpensive rubber, but man, it’s annoying when there’s a hair on it and you try and swipe it away thirty seven times before finally using fingernails.

It’s not a case I plan on using constantly, but if I ever get a night out on the town again it’s fairly nice to have the simplified Ice View interface there for what time it is or who just texted.

Once again, ignore the non-clear stuff shown in the pictures of the clear portion. That’s a peel off scratch prevention sticker. My phone is just in hour two of being an install CD for a server and I have no way to retake the photos without stopping that install.

One feature of this case that I like is the thickness of the rear keeps the camera lens off of the table if you’ve got it set down. Many cases do, but this seems to be the perfect cutout for it not getting icked up again.

Overall, I’m happy with a total price tag of $7.50. If I’d plunked down $49.99 for this I’d be highly disappointed.

You can grab your own for $5.77 plus $1.49 shipping from Amazon. They claimed shipping times were going to be over a month out, but I ordered it on the 14th and had it on the 21st or 22nd.