I just got my 'stand in' signature alpha ring last night (while I wait for my stealth bomber). I tried it on my Nexus 5, but the only way to get it to work is by removing my case, and even then it is quite sensitive at the sweet spot (bottom left of the phone if looking at the back). I have a Ringke Fusion case, which has a slim sheet of clear plastic on the pack to allow the back of the phone to show through. It isn't much more than a bumper case. This is apparently enough to block the signal from reaching the Alpha ring though. I'd really like it if I didn't have to remove this case.
edit: playing with it a bit more...it seems one side of my ring (and I can't tell the difference between the two sides visually) is picked up easier than the other side with the case on. It's still quite sensitive though with the case on. I'm going to give it a go with trying the stronger side as my unlock key.