Stop Wasting Your Money and Degrading Your Experience
You've just bought a shiny new iPhone, or sleek new Android device. You want to take care of it. You want the screen to stay as smooth and perfect as it is the day you bought it. You start to search for the best screen protector you can buy. I'm here to tell you your mobile phone or tablet already has the best screen protector you can buy: The extremely high quality optical glass already built into the device.
To be clear, the screen protectors I am talking about are the transparent, cellophane LCD films advertised to prevent scratches, anti glare, and even 'resist erosion and fingerprints'. I believe these sheets of plastic are scams and rip-offs and I'll explain why. Padded leather cases to protect the entire device are another matter and are not what this article is about.
Apple has banned screen protectors from the Apple Store. This should get your attention. Apple has distinguished itself by being highly customer focused and placing a huge premium on delivering excellently designed devices to the public. If this company has deemed screen protectors are so poor, Apple won't even sell them to make money, it's worth finding out why.
The modern glass used on mobile devices is optical glass which is the most scratch-resistant glass ever created. From Gorilla Glass to Dragon Glass to oleophobic surfaces, we have advanced glass technology like never before. A quick YouTube search will show people trying unsuccessfully to scratch iPhone screens with things like knives, keys, and razor blades. Since 2009, mobile manufactures have been using this higher quality glass from Corning and Asahi. What are you going to trust more, the highly refined engineered glass backed and supported by Apple, or a generic piece of cellophane?
Anecdotally, I should add that I've kept my iPhone in my front pocket with my car keys for years, and while the back of the phone has been lightly scratched, the screen is completely perfect. I've mentioned this to friends and they have confirmed that they do the same thing and have had the same results.
But, isn't it better to be safe than sorry? You've spent a lot on your new phone. Spending another $5 on a screen protector seems like a no-brainer. Maybe, but consider these things. Your screen protector is more likely to get scratches in it than your phone's screen. In other words, you don't want scratches, so you put a piece of material on your phone that is going to get scratches. But you can replace the material after it scratches, you argue. Yes, you can, but if the phone's screen itself isn't going to scratch, why are you putting something that can scratch over it.
Another point, screen protectors need to be precisely positioned to fit exactly right. And even when you are extremely careful, you can still get blemishes and air bubbles underneath the protector that look awful. Screen protectors have a high rate of return, which leaders to yet another scam.
Searching through Amazon, Ebay, and the like, you'll see that many screen protectors are sold for one penny! However, shipping is $7. If you don't like that screen protector, the merchant will happily refund your money, minus the shipping cost. All you have to do is send the screen protector back to them. So to get your one penny back, you'll have to pay to send the screen protector back. Who in the right mind is going to do that?
Mobile phones and tablets are an expensive investment and screen protectors have become a common phone accessory as sales tactics play upon people's fears. One article isn't going to convince you to abandon screen protectors. So I suggest this, when you know you are going to upgrade you mobile device, take off your screen protector and use your device as the manufacturer intended. If you get a scratch (you won't), you are just about to upgrade anyways, so what does it matter? But what you'll find out is you never needed a screen protector.