Our touchscreens are not what they used to be. Advancement in glass technologies used in our tablets and smartphones has left us thinking: do we still need screen protectors? Read on as we break it down for you and list down which are the best ones for your iPad.
What is a screen protector?
A screen protector is any material attached to your electronic device designed to protect its screen. By definition, these may include tempered glass, or the more commonly used plastic sheets.
What are screen protectors for?
Back in the good old days of resistive touchscreens, or early capacitive touchscreen technologies, screen protectors were primarily used to protect the screen from scratches. However, due to the advancement of glass technologies used on our smartphones and tablets, these screens cannot be scratched as easily compared to our screens years ago. In fact, if you are one to take good care of your phone, like not mixing them up with keys, coins and and most especially sand, you probably would not notice scratches on your screen (coins and keys cannot easily scratch most screens but can only cause minor ones when in serious contact). That being said, scratching your screen protector does not automatically mean your screen would have been scratched if your screen protector was not there. With this in light, it has already become impractical to use a screen protector primarily for avoid scratches.
Screen protectors are used to help avoid cracking or shattering your screen. A screen without a screen protector is more likely to crack than a screen with a protector as it helps keep the glass in one piece. It must be emphasized that the protector only helps avoid these cracks, thus not making your screen entirely shatter proof.
On the other hand, most screens especially that of high end devices has oleophobic coating on top of the glass to make swiping through your screen a breeze, and making fingerprint marks and smudges easier to clean. However, this coating fades over time, requiring more effort when cleaning your screen. Screen protectors with oleophobic or similar coating is used to make cleaning your screen easier again.
Is a screen protector for you?
Tablets and smartphones are our investments and must protect it at all cost, but along with the benefits of a screen protector are some payoffs. Depending on the kind of protector used, they can affect the overall color of the light emitted from the display, cause visual blockage on some viewing angles, and may help or hurt your view when under direct sunlight.
If you are one that is not very careful where you put your devices, mix them up with all sorts of stuff in your bag or pocket, with slippery hands and may drop it often, then a screen protector is definitely for you. I have a friend that is not all too careful with her Galaxy S3 and I cannot imagine how her phone would look like if she does not have a screen protector and a protective casing. The screen protector may have even saved the screen on several occasions where the phone was dropped on concrete.
If you are the kind that can take good care of your device, or even on the other extreme on being very obsessively compulsive of your device, or can manage the payoffs of using a protector as stated above, then you can risk not using a screen protector.
Which are the best ones for your iPad?
If you want to know which screen protectors are the best for your iPad, you have come to the right place as we have got you covered. Please take note that for this list we will only be focusing on plastic (specifically, polyurethane) screen protectors. Also, the price range indicates different prices for different iPad models.
1. amFilm Premium Screen Protector
[$5.99 – $8.95, Amazon]
TechMatte boasts to have a 3 layer polyethylene terephthalate (PET) film on this protector to avoid discoloration of the colors displayed by your iPad while effectively protecting the screen against scratches, dust, or scrapes. It is also very easy to apply thanks to its self-adhesive nature, that even first timers were able to get it right. On top of that, you also do not have to worry about bubbles as there are naturally zero to minimal of those. Included in the package are 2 screen protectors, 5 dust removal stickers, 1 microfiber cloth, 1 squeegee card to eliminate the bubbles, and an installation guide.
2. Tech Armor HD Screen Protector
[$8.95 – $11.95, Amazon]
Primarily addressing rainbow discoloration when applying the protector, the Tech Armor High Definition Clear Screen Protectors is the number one best seller in Amazon’s Tablet Screen Protectors department. Aside from being very easy to install, being able to effectively protect your iPad from scratches, dust, and daily wear and tear, Tech Armor provides you with a lifetime replacement warranty with excellent customer service. Upon purchasing, you get two pieces of the screen protector, a microfiber cloth, smoothing card to remove bubbles, dust removal tape, and installation instructions.
3. ArmorSuit MilitaryShield Screen Protector
[$6.97 – $9.95, Amazon]
Unlike the rest on this list, this protector requires a solution to apply it. In other words, the adhesive itself is not in the screen but on the solution, making applying this more complicated. An advantage of this kind of application is that once you have applied it and are not satisfied with the protector’s position, or have made a mistake, you can easily peel it off and apply it again as long as the solution has not dried up yet. You also do not have to worry about bubbles since it just disappears once the solution has dried.
Once the hassle of applying the solution and drying it out is done, you get an optically crystal clear, non-sticky scratch, grease, fingerprint proof screen protector. Oh, and ArmorSuit also claims this protector to be self-healing, which is interesting.
Upon purchasing, you get everything you need to apply this protector: application solution, microfiber clorth, detailed instructions, installation card, and a lifetime warranty card.
So there you have it, common screen protector FAQs, and the best ones for your iPad. Are you sporting a screen protector on your deivces? Why or why not? Share your experiences in the comments below!