Review: Spigen SGP GLAS.tR SLIM Privacy for iPhone 5/5c/5s
Spigen SGP has been doing more with glass screen protectors than any other company out there, so it's not much of a surprise to see GLAS.tR SLIM Privacy for iPhone 5/5c/5s ($40) make its way to shelves. It's the latest iteration of a product that we never expected to see go through so many different forms. Combining features from other products in the same family, this sheet of glass is "slim" -- the exact thickness isn't given, but it's less than 1mm -- and has rounded edges, with 9H hardness. The privacy feature is what's most interesting: much like traditional anti-spy films, this one only allows the iPhone's display to be viewed straight-on. From an off-angle, the screen is obscured.
GLAS.tR SLIM Privacy comes in a kit along with clear stickers to protect the back of the iPhone, six elevated Home Button stickers, a cleaning cloth, an alcohol wipe, and a squeegee. The installation process involves thoroughly cleaning the iPhone’s screen, peeling away the protector from the glass to expose the adhesive, lining it up, and pressing it down into place. We were happy with the bubble-free results. There are cutouts for the Home Button and earpiece, while the front-facing camera is still covered; the glass there is clear, however.
The protector adds a negligible amount of thickness to the phone, and unlike past privacy films, there’s no texture and thus no drag when touching the screen. Even the lightest touches register properly, and since it’s glass, it feels the same, as if there were nothing there at all. The protector is translucent black, so it’s especially pronounced on white iPhones, where the bezel takes on a different color. Viewed straight on, the display is totally visible, although you may notice a diagonal line pattern that’s especially pronounced over white and light-colored areas of these screen. As the device is angled one way or another, the display is obscured enough that whatever’s on the screen can’t be read.
One of the downsides to traditional privacy films is their sometimes rough texture, and GLAS.tR SLIM Privacy eliminates this problem with its smooth glass. It also does well in preventing unwanted eyes from seeing what’s on the iPhone. As is the case with most glass protectors, the price is the real issue: $40 is a substantial cost for a screen protector, especially one that could potentially shatter. It’s the only one of its kind though, and it performs its stated task well, earning it our general recommendation.