In today’s high-speed world, time seems to be one of the things we only have available in short supply. As the old saying goes, haste does indeed make waste. Applied to mobile technology, the kind of waste you do not want to make is scratches, because for one, it lowers the market value of your device but more importantly, it looks horrible and has the potential to make you unhappy.
Devices with a semi-large screen, such as iPods, digital cameras and especially, Pocket PCs, mostly because of their touchscreens, are prone to scratches, so you need to find a solution that will allow you to keep your display in pristine condition.
While researching screen protectors, I came across a company called ZAGG, makers of the semi-famous invisibleSHIELD. The product is made from a material that was originally designed to protect helicopter blades at high velocities and supposedly is able to withstand the toughest of challenges.
ZAGG offers about 1000 different versions of their screen protector, but sadly, they did not have a version for my brand-new O2 XDA Flame right away. What they do have though, is a custom order service where you can get a custom-built screen protector for your device. This premium service, however, will cost you an additional $4.95, which is not really that much, if you consider the merits of a screen protector.
After a couple of emails and submitting some hi-res pictures of my device’s screen, I was told that the team at ZAGG created a set of screen protectors for me (and my device) and that they were shipped my way.
A couple of days later, I received a shipment from ZAGG with my new screen protectors and immediately went to install them. I have used quite a few screen protectors in the past and have come across many different ways of applying these plastic sheets, but, to date, I have not come across a company that immersed themselves as much into the installation process as the guys from ZAGG do.
For example, to combat stains and fingerprints on the inside of the screen protector, the manual recommends that you cover your fingertips with the included application spray. A simple solution, yes, but one that I have not come across until now. Gotta give them a thumbs up for their thoughtfulness in this case.
In case you are not interested in reading the manual, just head on over to the Shieldzone and watch the installation video. The video was actually made for iPods, but the general steps are the same for any device you use.
Applying the shield, with or without the manual, in my case, was pretty easy. What I liked best was the lack of any bubbles but one, that, thankfully, aligned itself to the right side of the screen. Using the included squeegee, I was able to get rid of it mostly during my first try and the remaining part seemed to disappear by itself after a couple of hours.
One hint from me here: The manual recommends that you give the invisibleSHIELD a full 24 hours to set. To be honest, I know that many people will find it hard to be without their devices for that long, but in the end, believe me when I say that it is worth it. If you have bubbles, there is a good chance that some of them
After applying the invisibleSHIELD and giving it some time to get comfy on my device’s screen, I decided to run some color-testing to see how the screen protector would affect the color display. Since I already had covered the whole display on my new Pocket PC, I decided to use my trusty Qtek 9090 as a guinea pig for this one.
Take a second and then, take a real good look good at this image right here: one side is covered with a piece of invisibleSHIELD, the other is not. I will let you be the judge on which one is what…
While I believe the above image to speak volumes, let me assure you that it is, indeed, safe to call the invisibleSHIELD next-to-invisible. Once the plastic has “merged” with your device (FYI: it does not really merge, you can still safely remove it) the screen protector is very hard to spot, unless you look at the corners, of course.
Using the stylus on the invisibleSHIELD is not unlike using it with other screen protectors. The stylus does not stick to the cover and the invisibleSHIELD is thin enough to not off-set your stylus aim and, but you can still somehow tell that something is there.
In conclusion, I can tell you that the invisibleSHIELD is, indeed, a shield. Once applied, it protects your device’s screen from scratches and nasty fingerprints and yet does not influence the display quality in any way, if at all, the display actually gets a little more readable outside.
If you ask me, the invisibleSHIELD is like the guys from 300. Whereas the invisibleSHIELD is like Ancient Sparta and scratches are like the Ancient Persians. You can figure the rest out for yourself…