We get lots of questions about our different screen protective films and which one to order. We strive to have a lot of information on our main protective film page, but with so much information all in one place, it's hard to absorb it all! So let's address a question that is asked almost daily:
Screen protectors first and foremost protect screens from irreversible damage such as scratches, dings, and harsh cleaning chemicals. You can also use them to help protect your health, increase privacy, and reduce glare. Most importantly, preserving your screen clarity makes your device useable for more years, saving you money and helping the environment.
The very first screen protectors in the early 2000s were transparent and glossy. Manufactures have, over the years, added features to increase the usefulness of these screen savers. The first was to create an anti-glare material, and they did this by etching the outer surface. While this made an anti-glare, it also resulted in pixeling (distortion of the screen image). These early versions of anti-glare were not suitable for close-up viewing of text or for color-critical applications.
Technology has since improved and advanced to correct pixeling and has gone on to solve many other problems. Manufacturers now offer clear, anti-glare, anti-microbial, blue-light cut, privacy, shock-absorbing, hard-coated scratch-resistant, ultra-thin flexible materials, and many other specialty materials. Most screen protectors are used on flat screens and adhere to the screen with silicone resin. The new ultra-thin products usually have a higher adhesion and can bend and adhere to curved surfaces such as phones that wrap around OLED screens and large curved monitors.
When purchasing a screen protector, it would seem like a simple, straightforward decision, and it can be if you want general screen protection. But for those who have a unique application or need to purchase for a product that you or your company are manufacturing, you need to get the best screen protector that meets specific standards or requirements. For instance, will the device be used indoors or outdoors, be used on an office monitor, a drawing tablet, a vehicle in-dash vehicle in-dash, or a public kiosk? Each of these devices have special considerations.
1. What is the main reason(s) you are looking to cover your device screen?
a. Extending the life of your device
- Most screen protectors cover the screen to keep it looking new. However, cheap screen protectors may not have the clarity you need. A higher-quality screen protector with other features may better fit your needs.
b. Reducing screen surface glare
- Glare reduction is accomplished on a screen protector by two methods: etching or, most recently, by applying nanoparticles evenly over the outer surface. This newer method creates a much better image than the anti-glare materials of years ago, significantly reducing past pixeling issues.
- If it is most important to maintain image quality, reading text, or working with color-critical applications such as Photoshop or prepress work, you are best served by considering a light anti-glare or no anti-glare (glossy) screen protector. Medium to heavy anti-glare screen protectors will gray out in sunlight when viewing from the side. In addition, for some color-critical applications, consider purchasing a monitor hood to reduce ambient light on the screen. A monitor hood puts nothing between you and the screen image and takes some of the overhead and side light off the screen. Photodon makes monitor hoods for almost any monitor for both office and industrial applications.
c. Protecting from excessive cleaning or harsh cleaning chemicals
- These can degrade the screen when cleaning repeatedly, especially with chemicals such as bleach or alcohol.
- Using the wrong cleaner on a screen can permanently damage the anti-glare and other coatings of your device.
d. Reducing fingerprinting
- Fingerprints on a touchscreen such as in a vehicle can be incredibly annoying; using a light anti-glare screen protector will help with this issue. Avoid higher anti-glare in vehicles as they tend to gray out when viewing from an angle. Oleophobic coatings allow the removal of fingerprints more easily by utilizing a microfiber cloth.
e. Eliminating most germs and microbes
- If you have concerns about germs and microbes on your touchscreen, especially on a shared device, an anti-microbial screen protector may be the product for you. The top layer contains zinc, and microbes cannot live on surfaces that contain zinc.
f. Protecting eyes and help with sleep patterns
Blue Light Cut
- Help regulate your sleep patterns. Blue light from the screen can disrupt your body's natural production of melatonin.
- Reduce eye stress; reducing blue light reduces eye stress related to long hours of screen viewing.
- Screen protectors that block the Ultraviolet spectrum act more like filters because they filter out most UV and the highest end of the blue light spectrum. Filters work in both directions so that a blue light cut material will protect both the display from direct sun and the user from any UV and higher end blue light.
g. Protecting information on the screen
- Privacy filters reduce visibility of information on your screen from side viewing, while keeping the information on the screen visible to the user. They also protect digital gear from damage and glare, as well as reduce UV and blue light.
- There are three versions of privacy filters:
–Two-way, which provides privacy from the left and right (or top and bottom depending on the orientation of your screen), with fully backed adhesion. This type is recommended for one installation only, as removing and re-installing will result in an unclear viewing area once it is reapplied.
–Two-way, which provides privacy from the left and right (or top and bottom depending on the orientation of your screen), adhered with adhesive tabs. This type is easier to apply and can be installed and removed many times.
–Four-way, which provide privacy from both sides, the top, and the bottom. These have fully backed adhesion and are best used on tablets, phones, and kiosks. This type is recommended for one installation only, as removing and re-installing will result in an unclear viewing area once it is reapplied.
For more information on how privacy filters work, visit our blog: How are Privacy Filters Made, and How do they function? (photodon.com)
2. Where is the screen device being used?
Does the environment require a special purpose screen protector material?
a. Harsh environment
- If using your device in environments such as an auto shop with diagnostic equipment or for fieldwork, you may want a higher scratch or shock resistance screen protector for your touchscreen. Anti-shock protectors give you an added level of protection by adding an extra layer of shock-absorbing material laminated to the primary layer. In addition, these anti-scratch screen protectors have a special hard coating applied to the top surface. Shops and manufacturing facilities using a human-machine interface (HMI) are examples of environments where these film types are helpful.
b. Public transportation
- If you do a lot of traveling on public transportation, a privacy filter may be an excellent choice to keep information on your screen private to only you.
c. Busy open office environments and any business that needs to adhere to HIPPA
- If you work in a medical, financial, or government setting, privacy filters will also be the best choice to keep information private.
- Churches often have big screen TVs and have found that glare is an issue. Anti-glare protectors prove to be the best for better visibility.
e. Restaurant or other public place
- If multiple users are using an ordering system such as in restaurants or stores, chances are there are germs and microbes on the screen. Our anti-microbial film reduces germs and microbes by 99%. Hopefully, the screens are being cleaned regularly, which is another reason a protector would benefit in this situation.
If you want a quick answer as to what type of film to purchase from the Photodon website, click this link to our film type questionnaire.
We are happy to help you with any question you may have. If needed, please contact us at 847-377-1185, M-F 9:00am – 5:00pm EST, or email us at [email protected].
The need for online school and online socializing in order to keep safe during the COVID-19 pandemic has led to a steep increase in screen time for most children and teens. This information from a recent New York Times article confirms this fact: "When the coronavirus lockdowns started in March, the kids' tech firm SuperAwesome found that screen time was up 50%. Nearly a year later, that percentage hasn't budged, according to new figures from the firm." With all of this additional screen time, children's eye health is at risk. The good news is blue light-cut screen protectors can help prevent macular degeneration, reduce eyestrain and headaches, and may even keep sleep patterns stable. But what is blue light and why can it have these negative effects on human health?Continue reading
We’ve all watched the Christmas Story movie, right? Remember when Ralphie was asked, “What do you want for Christmas, Ralphie?”? Instead of answering, “I want a Red Rider Carbon Action 200 shot range model air rifle,” what he REALLY meant to say was “I want a Photodon blue light–cutting, scratch–resistant screen protector for my Samsung 49-inch Curved Gaming Monitor !!!” HAD he said that he wouldn’t have been tormented with the “You’ll shoot your eye out, kid” saying from all of the responsible adults in his world.
Andy was on a mission to find a screen protector that would keep his new 55-inch television protected from scratches AND his eyes protected from eye strain. After researching the Photodon website, he enthusiastically placed his order with an MXB blue light cut screen protector, but it wasn’t just for his large gaming television monitor. He also bought MXB blue light cut screen protectors for a 2nd TV and for his iPhone!
Reason (and we install – fairly local)
Why? Andy’s biggest concern, even ahead of keeping his devices in pristine condition, was conserving his eye health. He was trying to diminish his chances of developing macular degeneration like his grandma had and like his mom has now. Photodon’s blue light cut screen protectors can help to reduce the threat of this potentially life-altering condition.
Andy chose Photodon for its MXB screen protectors because his research led him to us. Our informational site, accompanied by blogs, research, and videos, helped convince him and his parents to use our MXB screen protectors to protect their devices and their eye health.
And because Andy lives relatively close to the Photodon shop, he was able to have us install his new MXB screen protector onto his 55-inch television for him in our cleanroom.
How is it working for Andy now? “The protectors are amazing! My eyes do not get tired as quickly as they did, and I am sleeping better than I was before them.”
If you would like to learn more about Photodon’s blue light cut screen protectors, take a peek at this site: https://www.photodon.com/c/MXB.html.
You can also help regulate your sleep patterns, prevent over-eating, reduce eye stress, and lessen your risk for macular degeneration just like Andy is doing now. Let the sales team at Photodon know how we can assist you! You can contact us at 847-377-1185, M-F 9:00a.m – 5:00pm EST, or email us at [email protected].
Because June is Computer Vision Syndrome Awareness Month, we thought we'd showcase how Photodon's MXB blue light-cut film can help not only eye-health, but overall health.
The American Opthomalic Association warns against the dangers of long periods of exposure from computers and other digital screens on the health of our eyes. Computer Vision syndrome is basically eye strain and blurred vision due to staring at digital screens for long periods of time.
Today’s screen protectors have many features beyond just protecting your screen from scratches and impact damage. You can buy a screen protector for just about any device with a screen, from MP3 players to large-screen TVs. And you can only find these specialty screen protectors at Photodon.