How to Choose a Screen Protector for Your iPad

Apple iPad screens have always been notoriously delicate. Astonishingly vibrant and sharp yes, but also incredibly delicate.

And as a result, screen protectors are considered almost a basic necessity with any of their devices, especially large ones such as the iPad Pro with Retina LED-backlit display that would be expensive to replace.

There are several different ways to protect your screen — one of which is using an iPad Pro screen protector.

When choosing a screen protector, it’s important to find the right balance between cost and protection. Because the cheapest option may not always be the best, but a high price doesn’t always guarantee the best quality.

In this guide, we’ll show you the different factors involved when it comes to picking a screen protector that best fits your needs.

Choosing an iPad Screen Protector: Things to Consider

Below is a list of key factors to consider to make sure you get one that is well-suited to your needs.

1. Size & Compatibility

Since the iPad comes in more than one size, for example, 11-inch, and 12.9-inch, the screen protectors do as well. Make sure that the screen protector is specifically designed for your iPad model.

While it may say “iPad Pro” on it, make sure you’re picking the right dimensions for the device that you have, since no protector will be sized to fit on both.

Just make sure that the screen protector is specifically designed for your iPad model, whether it’s iPad Air, or iPad Pro.

2. Case Material

Screen protectors come in three main forms: a thin plastic film, tempered glass, or hard plastic.

The thin film will protect you from scratches, but not much else. A tempered glass cover will save your screen in the event of a drop but is considerably thicker.

Lastly, the hard plastic kinds are usually part of a larger case, but they offer all-around protection.

3. Ease of Installation

Some iPad screen protectors are easier to install than others.

Make sure to look for a protector that comes with a clear installation guide or even better with an installation kit, as this will make the process much easier and ensure that it will be installed correctly.

4. Lifespan

Every protector has a lifespan before it will need to be replaced.

For tempered glass, expect to replace it after any major drop that causes cracks, and the thin films will only last as long as it takes for the edges to curl and dust to strip away the adhesive.

Hard plastics have the longest lifespan but are more difficult to replace when they inevitably become scratched.

You should pick a screen protector based on how much damage you think your iPad will take and how often you can afford to replace it.

5. Brand

Choose a reputable brand that offers good customer service and warranty.

Make sure you understand the warranty policy of the product and read some reviews about the product online, or ask around to get some advice from your family or friends.


Here are some related questions you might have about iPad screen protectors, I’ll answer them briefly below.

Does Apple recommend using a screen protector?

Apple does not officially recommend the use of screen protectors for the iPad. However, they do acknowledge that some users may want to use a screen protector as an additional layer of protection.

Is it better to get a glass screen protector or plastic?

Both glass and plastic screen protectors have their own advantages and disadvantages, so it’s hard to say which one is better. It all comes down to personal preference and usage.

What is the best material for iPad screen protector?

It all depends on the level of protection you need and your personal preferences. Generally, tempered glass is considered the best material, as it provides the most protection and the highest level of clarity, but the tradeoff is it is more expensive than other materials.

Some Other Useful Tips

If you have never put on a screen protector, it can be difficult at first.

Even those who are experienced have dealt with unwanted air bubbles, trapped dust, or uneven edges. It can be incredibly frustrating — so how do you get it right?

First, find somewhere relatively dust free and clean (it can help if it’s humid out, such as in the bathroom after a hot shower).

Wash your hands so you won’t get any oils on the protector, clean your screen with the cloth that comes with most protectors, and then follow the instructions on the package.

Do the instructions seem unclear on the package? You can follow these general instructions from the YouTube video below that should work for tempered glass screen protectors.

If you’re using a thin film, you have a little bit more room for error when sticking it but the processor is essentially the same.

Final Words

An iPad is sleek and gorgeous straight out of the box, and it makes sense that you don’t want to change that with cases or accessories despite the necessity.

A screen cover can strike a great balance between protection and design since it’s almost invisible while still providing a degree of safety when it comes to drops and bumps.

Some people may be willing to risk it, but if you know you are particularly clumsy, definitely don’t skip out on getting a screen protector.

For those who already have a case that comes up above the edge of the screen or that comes with a built-in protector, a screen protector is less important but not altogether obsolete.

Whether you’re confident you only need a thin film or are convinced you won’t survive without plenty of tempered glass, there is a solution for everyone.

While it would be nice to just have sturdier screens, in the meantime this is the best solution we have, and it works pretty well.

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