Houston Chronicle: iPhone cases may be great for protecting the back and sides of your iPhone, but most of them offer little or no protection for the screen. After smashing the screen of my iPhone 4s, I’ve used a tempered-glass protector on the screen of every iPhone and have yet to damage another iPhone screen.
I have, however, broken a dozen or more tempered-glass screen protectors over the years. But, a shattered glass protector is better and less expensive than the alternative; my iPhone screen survived intact every time. Since tempered-glass screen protectors cost a fraction of an iPhone screen replacement, I consider them an excellent deal.
I buy the cheapest off-brand protectors I can find on Amazon.com and rarely pay more than $5 or $6 apiece; they usually last a month (or two or three) before they break.
Last year I received a pair of premium-glass screen protectors: Invisible Shield Sapphire Defense and BodyGuardz Pure 2. Like the cheapies, they were easy to apply; unlike the cheapies, they both include free lifetime replacements.
Last October I tried BodyGuardz Pure 2 ($44.95), made with Corning Accessory Glass 2, which claimed to be three to five times more scratch resistant and up to 25 percent more drop resistant than soda-lime glass.
Mine lasted nearly 30 days, so I applied for my free replacement (which cost $6.44 for shipping and handling) and received it in a couple of weeks.
I then installed the Invisible Shield Sapphire Defense ($49.99), which claims to be the world’s most advanced screen protection, offering seven times more shatter protection than a bare screen. Much to my surprise, I haven’t broken it yet, and it still looks as good as it did the day I installed it last October.
So, the question is: Do you pay $50 for the world’s most advanced screen protector with a lifetime warranty, or would you be better served by a handful of cheaper tempered-glass screen protectors with no warranties?
That’s a tough call. While I’m impressed with Sapphire Defense, and it has saved my screen several times already, I suspect the cheapies will be more economical over time. And, while I appreciate the idea of free replacements, I hate waiting. Finally, it’s likely my next iPhone will have a different screen size or shape, making it a moot point.
One last thing: Speaking of shattered glass, last week I told you how much I liked the Glass case by SwitchEasy ($39.99). Sadly, a few days after the column ran, a sudden stop in my car sent my iPhone flying out of the cup holder and into a metal seat rail. While Sapphire Defense protected the screen, the tempered-glass back of the case was shattered.
Although my iPhone survived unscathed, I can no longer recommend this case.
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