If you’ve ever dropped an iPad or iPhone, you’re probably familiar with the universal moment of dread that follows. Those few seconds before you check for damages are usually filled with silent pleas that your device is unharmed. Why? Because cracking or shattering a screen is the perfect way to ruin a good day.
So, how can you ensure that your screen is kept safe? By investing in the best iPad screen protector for your device. To do this, you’ll need to keep a few qualities and characteristics in mind: material, coverage and fit, features, case compatibility, and application.
Let’s quickly break down why each of these qualities is essential in finding an amazing iPad screen protector.
What your screen protector is made of is its most important feature. Screen protectors are mainly made of two materials, tempered glass and plastic. Plastic protectors were popular for many years, but have since been replaced by more sturdy materials.
Tempered glass is a toughened safety glass that is more durable and environmentally friendly than plastic. It’s also around four times stronger than standard glass. When glass is tempered, it undergoes a thermal process and chemical treatments that quickly heat the glass and cool it. This compresses its exterior and leads to harder, stronger glass.
A major advantage of tempered glass is that it shatters better than regular glass. It does not break into shards, but rather smaller, much safer pieces. This means that even if your screen protector does break, you won’t have to worry about finding sharp glass for days afterwards.
The best iPad screen protectors are certified to have 9H or 10H scratch protection, the highest levels available.
A screen protector that doesn’t fit is almost as bad as one made of poor materials.
There are two main types of coverage with screen protectors: edge-to-edge and flat. Most screen protectors are designed to leave a bit of space between the edge of the screen and the beginning of the screen protector. With edge-to-edge, there’s no gap left, so the protector covers every inch of the face of the screen.
Although this may seem like a matter of preference, edge-to-edge coverage prevents hairline cracks along the corners of your screen. If you opt for a flat-screen protector, look for one with reinforced edges to help prevent chipping and cracking that spreads across the screen.
What sense does it make to invest in a screen protector if they just work as protection? The best iPhone screen protector will do more than keep your device crack-free. It should have a few extra perks that make it more than just protection.
For example, the ideal screen protector will have an anti-fingerprint and anti-oil oleophobic coating. This helps prevent those annoying fingerprint marks that can make the visibility of your screen more difficult.
Anti-bacterial properties are also key. Phones are some of the most germ-ridden accessories we use regularly. Especially now, it’s essential that our screens (which we touch with our hands and faces) don’t trap and spread bacteria. Your iPad screen protector should have an antimicrobial coating to keep germs to a minimum.
Your screen protector also shouldn’t smudge or be cloudy or foggy. Clarity is very important - if you can’t see through your screen protector clearly, then it’s not the high-quality product that you need.
The right screen protector won’t affect your ability to protect the rest of your device. Some protectors aren’t designed to be used with cases and can make it difficult to put on and take off a case. In some cases, you may not even be able to use a case.
That’s why, before you make your purchase, you should be 100% sure that your screen protector is compatible not just with your device, but also with your case. You shouldn’t have to sacrifice the well-being of your entire device just to accommodate your screen protector.
You can prevent these issues by using only screen protectors that explicitly state they are usable with your iPad model and generation.
Another way to do this is to get your screen protector and iPad case from the same company. This way, you can be certain that the two products are made to work together with no difficulties.
Now that you’ve found the perfect iPad screen protector, the next step is putting it on. How well it applies will determine how long it stays on the screen and, therefore, how well spent your money will be.
Some screen protectors have poor adhesives that lead to them sliding and moving not long after application. Ideally, your protector will have a pressure-sensitive, silicone-based adhesive that’s built to last. Most top-level protectors stay in place for around three months!
Your screen protector should be easy to apply on your own. You shouldn’t need any fancy equipment or a professional to put it in place. Once your screen is wiped with a screen cleaner and is free of dust and lint, there shouldn’t be any unsightly air bubbles trapped underneath. That’s why you should also get a quick “how-to” manual to help you apply your screen protector the right way.
Once you’ve chosen the right screen protector, the chances of keeping your device in great condition are so much higher.
When it comes to your iPad screen, the saying “better safe than sorry” definitely applies. Here are a few of the best iPad screen protectors on the market - long-lasting and perfect for keeping your screen free of cracks and smudges.