If there’s one thing all smartphone owners have in common, it’s the anxiety about dropping and cracking an expensive piece of hardware while you’re out and about during the day. Most people slide their phone into a plastic case and hope for the best. But Honda has developed an unusual new solution to the problem: a clunky phone case with 6 built-in airbags which inflate instantly when the phone detects that it’s falling. It’s not very attractive, but at least it gets the job done. Watch the video to see the case in action after the jump.

So is Honda actually going to release its Smartphone Case N to the general public? It’s hard to tell from the video (especially if you don’t speak Japanese), but the company has confirmed that it has no plans to mass-produce the product. Turns out the clip is part of a clever ad campaign for the company’s new line of mini cars, the N-WGN, and that’s probably for the best considering that it would be impossible for most people to actually fit the airbag case in their trouser pocket.

As far-fetched as the idea sounds, it is based in a grain of reality. Apple has already applied for a patent that would introduce “self-righting” technology to the notoriously fragile iPhone. It’s essentially a puff of air that would create thrust and slow the fall of the phone as it approaches the ground. Forget airbags — maybe phones with rocket packs will be the way of the future after all.

Via Metro