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Saturday
May052012

Spigen SGP Glas t iPad 3rd Gen Glass Screen Protector Review

At long last, the wait is over and what we consider to be the world's best screen protector ever made is here to to serve and protect iPads. Spigen SGP continues its great success with its revolutionary Glas t glass screen protector made for Apple's new iPad 3rd Gen and the iPad 2. Having already reviewed the Glas t for the iPhone 4S and awarding it our Editors' Choice award, it's even more exciting this time around knowing very well what to expect out of this bigger slab of glass awesomeness that is the Glas t for iPad. Jump over the break for a second round of glass on glass action!

If you thought dropping $28 on Spigen SGP's glass screen protector for the iPhone 4 and 4S was a lot, you'll need to shell out $70 for this iPad version. That's a lot. A whole lot of money, for a screen protector. With little to no competitors, this is the only glass protector you'll find. On a side note, the Glas t is only compatible with the iPad 2 and the new iPad 3rd generation. It will not work with the original iPad, sadly. Got an Android tablet? Good luck with that.

Perhaps the biggest letdown when I first opened up the large white protective packaging of the Glas t was the exclusion of the epoxy home button covers that are including with the iPhone version and make it easier to press the home button after you've applied the protector. Other than that, included are the usual tools meant to help you with the installation process like a large cleaning cloth, wet (ethanol) cleaning swab and a squeegee.

The Glas t is of course touch-through and made from a a 0.4mm thick chemically treated, tempered sheet of glass that has the same exact oleophobic coating as the iPad's screen which really helps clean fingerprints and smudges easily. The installation process is not different than before, however, it's even more difficult applying such a big piece of glass on top of the iPad just because you've got more chances of dust and lint forming even after you've made sure to clean the screen seconds in advance. It's a one shot opportunity and you must take your time to be sure that you're about to apply the Glas t perfectly centered or else you're in some deep trouble and out $70 as it cannot be re-positioned or re-applied like traditional plastic screen protectors. That's sort of the most notable caveat with these next generation screen protectors.

When you're confident that the Glas t is all lined up, give it a light tap and that wonderful silicone adhesive will start to work its magic and activate a static cling which will start to spread suction across the screen while it does most of the work for you. You'll end up with a few pockets of air which are easily squeegeed flat. And if you worked quick enough in a clean environment, you should have a flawless installation without any air bubbles. It's possible, but very hard to achieve a flawless installation. And that holds true about any type of screen protector. My installation went rather well with only a few minor bubbles caused by lint alone, albeit they're not noticeable once you turn the iPad's screen on. Removing the Glas t is quick and very easy to do. It leaves no residue behind.

After all is said and done, the Glas t for the iPad is as brilliant as the one we've reviewed for the iPhone. You'll hardly even notice it on. There's absolutely no touch sensitivity degradation or odd color manipulation. Running your finger across it feels just like the naked glass of the iPad. The one and only advantage in using the Glas t glass screen protector is that it offers superior screen protection without you even noticing the change you've just made to protect your investment. Unlike plastic protectors, the Glas t cannot be easily scuffed and scratched, and even if you deliberately try with reason, you most likely won't succeed.

It's ridiculous how incredibly well the Glas t keeps the original sleek glass feeling, look and durability of the iPad's glass touchscreen. You retain that same silky smooth responsive touchscreen you fell in love with the moment you unwrapped your Apple slate. It literally feels like there's nothing there.

Most importantly, the gorgeous super high resolution Retina display of the iPad 3rd Gen shines thru the Glas t displaying every single one of its 2048x1536 pixels in sharp, unhindered detail. Again, it's as if you've never applied a screen protector. And that's what makes this glass screen protector an unbeatable screen protection solution for not only the iPad, but the iPhone as well.

As you can see in these two 100% macro crops, there's no difference whatsoever in the clarity, detail and sharpness of the display using the Glas t on the iPad 3rd Gen. Pixel peeping at its finest. I should note that the two images were taken at different angles, which is why you're seeing a color and glare difference between the two.

Spigen SGP included epoxy home button stickers with its original Glas t for the iPhone for a good reason. They're meant to help fill in the gap created by the thickness of the glass overlaying the iPad's screen. You're left with a little bit of an indentation that you will just have to get used to. With that said, I found the iPad to be less forgiving compared to the iPhone when reaching the home button. It actually isn't so bad when you experience it in person. 

Having this on the iPad is even better than using it with the iPhone. The Glas t is such a thin slab of perfectly cut and finished glass that because it has a lot more screen real estate to cover than the iPhone, it's virtually unnoticeable when holding the iPad in the way its designed and doesn't add any significant weight either. The Smart Cover still works perfectly well with the Glas t, as do styluses and even many cases, sleeves and accessories like the Tuffwrap and Magnus stand have no trouble playing well with the Glas t.

The Glas t is the most amazing screen protector we've come across. Spigen SGP's glass protector for the iPhone is pricy, yet reasonably so. But $70 is simply too much to ask in this case, and that's a tough decision to make when all you want to do is keep your iPad's screen scratch free. That magnificent Retina display should never be used with regular screen protectors, especially anti-glare ones. Glass on glass seems to be the most logical tactic these days. If you've got that extra cash and want to keep your iPad's screen looking and feeling the way Apple intended, then the Glas t glass screen protector is worth investing in. Spigen SGP's Glas t for the iPad wins a permanent spot on our iPad with an Editors' Choice award, albeit with a lower rating due to price and exclusion of epoxy home buttons.

Spigen.com

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