Thursday, April 2, 2009

Skinomi

Trusty, but simple

At the end of last year I upgraded my phone. I went from a 2 year old Sanyo Katana to the new HTC Touch Pro. It was a pretty massive jump. My Katana could take poor quality pictures, send/receive SMS messages, play basic midi files for ringers, and had "internet" capabilities that were on par with my toaster's ability to make lasagna.

The Touch Pro is a great phone, kind of like an iPhone with a keyboard underneath. The front touch screen comes with a little plastic protector you can put it on it to keep it from getting scratched, which is a nice of them. Granted it's not a very high quality protector being little more than a piece of plastic that's sticky on one side. But it works.

Over the past few months of using my phone for just about everything except making calls, the screen protector had developed some faults. Little bits of dust and lint had worked their way under it, creating unsightly bubbles and flaws in it. Not amount of pushing or coercing could get the bubbles to move to the edges and gone, or even move them to a less unsightly position on the screen. So about a week ago I decided to take it off, clean it, and reposition it.

As it turns out, cleaning a cheap screen protector is like pulling apart duct tape that's stuck to itself--once it's on there it's on there. It also didn't help that while cleaning the screen I dropped the protector, sticky side down, onto the very lint/grime covered carpet. Putting it back on my phone was no longer an option. As with most touch screens, the Touch Pro screen isn't the most scratch resistant on it's own. Looking online for screen protectors, most looked to be about the same with each review saying they worked well. So I got on ebay an ordered one of Skinomi's TechSkin protectors for a few dollars less than they were selling it.

TechSkin Protector

It arrived yesterday. Taking it out of the package, I notice that it comes with a 10 step instruction manual for applying it. Apparently "put on phone" doesn't cut it these days. I really can't criticize the instructions much, though, because they did seem to work. First you have to take the battery out of the phone, clean it off with a lint-free cloth, wash your hands thoroughly, soak the protector for a minute before you peel it off the sheet it comes on, wet your fingers, peel it off, dip it in water again, shake off the excess water (keeping your fingers wet), apply it to the phone, straighten/flatten it with the applicator (piece of plastic with a flat edge), then dab it dry and leave it off for 12 hours minimum to dry completely. It's a long process, but you feel kind of like a chemist doing it. Or maybe a photographer. Either way it's almost fun.

The one issue with the process is that the Skinomi protector for the HTC Touch Pro isn't quite the right size. It's a little short, the speaker/light sensor hole is a little too long and a little too low, and the top goes over the rounded corners. I'm guessing it was designed for the Fuze, which was Verizon's version of the Touch Pro (still made by HTC, though). So after applying it initially I had to peel the edges off a bit and trim them with a scissors so that there were no edges that could be easily peeled off or catch. (Initially I tried to take a knife and run it along the edge cutting it, but Skinomi doesn't joke about their screen protectors--the knife on my Leatherman couldn't cut it.)

So my phone has a new protector now. It's not perfect as I said, and doesn't quite cover the entire screen, but it covers all the important areas which is what matters. It would be nice if it fit exactly onto the screen like the one that came with the phone did; it fit so exactly--the edges lined up exactly with the screen--I had forgotten it was on there until I tried to clean some lint off and found out I couldn't.

I think it was a good purchase, though. I like my phone and use it often; I don't want it damaged or scratched up, and if this protector could stand up to a rather sharp knife trying to cut it intentionally,

I'd probably order it

I imagine it'll do pretty well against unintentional nicks.


I hope everyone had a good April 1st. Google's CADIE was quite entertaining (anyone else catch the Star Trek: TNG reference?) as was ThinkGeek's, Blizzard's, and NIN's (a NIN album featuring Jay-Z, Sheryl Crow, and Bono would be quite interesting).

1 comment:

Siegfred said...

I've tried several skins before and wasn't completely satisfied with the results. Although Skinomi is cheap, I saw an even cheaper product while surfing the net. I've ordered GagdetShieldz skins and was happy to have it. Installation was the same and they provided me the same high quality skin for the total body protection for my phone.