First Look: Newer Technology NuVue Screen + NuVue Privacy Protectors for the Apple iPad
As the most aggressively priced screen and privacy protectors we've yet seen for the iPad, Newer Technology's NuVue comes in single film packages: the standard "smudge and glare resistant" Screen Protector version sells for $10, and the screen-dimming Privacy Protector sells for $40. NewerTech notes that the privacy film only works to dim off-angle iPad viewing when the device is used vertically, unlike some of the four-way dimming films that have been released in the past. Neither of the NuVue versions comes with an applicator card or cleaning cloth, similarly skipping cardboard packaging to shave down the price.
On May 13, 2010, iLounge published The Complete Guide to iPad Cases and Protection, a multi-page comparison of over 70 different iPad cases and film protectors, sorted by genre. The following details were added to this piece by that comparison article; please click on the link above for additional comparative discussion of similar protective options.
Virtually all of the privacy film we’ve seen over the years has been either matte-finished or lenticular, with grooves cut into the top surface of the plastic. NuVue isn’t. It’s glossy and surprisingly thin—once applied, it looks like a series of diagonal stripes is running down the face of the black iPad screen.
Installation was very tricky on NuVue relative to other films here, and previously tested. First, the film was tricky to align properly because it’s cut a couple of millimeters short of the top of the iPad screen, so getting the film’s single hole installed dead-center with the Home button leaves some of the iPad’s glass unexposed. We also found that air bubbles were much harder to remove from NuVue than its rivals due in part to the glossy coating, and in part because no applicator card was included with the film. We tried three different cards and found the bubbles very difficult to remove with all of them.
The one advantage NuVue has over rivals is pixel clarity: unlike the other two discussed here, it doesn’t blur the screen when viewed straight on. But on virtually any slightly off angle with the screen held vertically and tilted left to right, black diagonal stripes appear on the screen like pencil lines—its privacy effect. NuVue offers no privacy advantage when used in landscape mode and tilted or viewed from the left or right, which is the same as the two-way Incipio film but not the Capdase four-way film. We would call its privacy benefits the most mild of the bunch—only a little behind Incipio’s, with a less attractive appearance.
This is the “smudge and glare resistant” Screen Protector after installation. Unlike any other film we’ve tried, the protective top layer peeled off to reveal a weird crystalline pattern that was plastic residue of some sort on top of the film, which proved very difficult to remove and obviously unattractive, coming partially off as a layer of sparkling plastic dust. It’s the first screen protector we’ve seen that actually left the iPad looking dustier than it began. Additionally, the film is not really anti-glare in the sense of most of its matte-finished rivals but rather just glossy and cheap.