The Best Options to Protect Your Phone

by Sandra Henshaw - , Last Updated on June 4, 2015, How To Guides

There’s nothing worse than that sinking feeling as your brand new mobile slips out of your hand and slowly spins towards the floor… With top end phones costing well over five hundred pounds, it makes sense that you’d want to protect your delicate new purchase. Okay, you’ll be spending a little more cash to keep your baby safe, but investing in a decent phone protection option is going to be a whole lot cheaper than buying a new mobile, right? That’s why we’re taking a look at some of the best phone protection options out there…

But First…

Before we get to some of your options, let’s talk a little bit about what exactly you’re trying to protect your phone from. By far the biggest priority is your display. Touch screen smart phones are awesome, but that screen is incredibly delicate. Drop your phone, or have something else fall on your phone, and you could find that your mobile is unusable. So your biggest concern is going to be your screen.

The body of your phone could probably use a little protection too- to keep it looking shiny and new. If you drop your mobile, the chances are that it will probably still work. The body of a phone is quite tough. However, dings, scrapes and scratches will not only leave your mobile looking shabby, but will also lower its re-sale value in case you should want to sell it when you upgrade.

Finally, there are more rugged options. If you’re an outdoors enthusiast, or just a butter fingers, there are specially designed protection options that will allow your phone to withstand even more than the regular every day bumps and bangs. If necessary, you can also waterproof your phone- useful if you like kayaking or surfing the net in the bath…

Screen Protection…

Screen Protector

Screen Protector

The basic role of a screen protector is to bind to your display and hold it all together, preventing the screen from shattering if your phone is dropped. All of these protection options are easy to apply, you can put a protector on yourself in a couple of minutes. But you do have a choice of three major kinds of screen film.

The elementary form of screen protector is called a PET screen, and is made from plastic. For the majority of people, this (cheap) option will be fine. But there are also TPU films, which are sturdier and protect better against scratches, though they’re obviously more expensive. The final option is to go for a tempered glass protector. This is the hardiest of choices, and it’s unlikely that your phone will suffer any damage if you opt for tempered glass, though these protectors are pretty pricey. Oh, and despite the name, a tempered glass protector will not add any noticeable extra weight or thickness to your mobile.

There are tons of screen protection manufacturers, and especially if you’re going for the PET option it’s really not going to make a lot of difference which product you choose. However, there are some brands that have a better reputation than others- especially when it comes to the more expensive TPU and tempered glass options. Look out for these brand names: XO Skinz, BodyGuardz, ZAGG and MilitaryShield.

Body Protection…

Plastic Case

Plastic Case

You’ve got two body protection options, a “hull” or “skin” or a cover. A hull or skin is lightweight and clips onto the body of your phone. We’re a fan of Gelaskins and Skinit brands, both of which make reasonably priced skins. However, whilst a skin will protect the body of your phone against minor damage (and look good too), it won’t be the most secure option.

Cases slide onto or over your phone, and whilst they will weigh a little more than a skin, you’ll get much better protection for the body of your phone. There are slide in cases, though these tend to be risky since you’ll be taking your phone in and out of them all the time. A case that opens and closes like a book tends to be the best option, since you need never remove your phone from the case and you get added screen protection as well. If you happen to have a Samsung or Apple phone then both manufacturers make excellent covers for their own devices. Belkin make some great covers too.

Do watch out for the material that a cover or case is made from. There have been some reports of silicone cases marring the metal of a phone’s body, for example.

Rugged Protection…

Otterbox Rugged Protection

Otterbox Rugged Protection

If you opt for rugged protection then you’re going to be paying a fair amount of cash, but you will be safe in the knowledge that your phone can withstand pretty much anything… Most rugged casings are military grade, and there are a number of manufacturers on shelves. We do have some favourites though…

The Tank by Case-Mate is shock proof, wind proof, waterproof and pretty much everything proof, and is used by the US military. XTREME by G-Force is a specially designed brand of rugged cases that feature a chemical technology that allows the case to stiffen when it feels an impact and absorb shock. Pricey, but good looking and one of the best performing rugged cases on the market.

The Hard Core Series by Ballistic are all designed with four layers of protection, meaning that your phone is protected against nearly anything you could throw at it (or indeed, protected if you actually throw it). Finally Otterbox make a large range of protective covers, at a variety of price levels, and if you’re looking for something on a budget they’ll probably be your best bet.

A new mobile phone is a thing of beauty- but it’s also a serious investment. Whilst you might think that your cool looking phone will suffer from a case or other protection, the truth is that mobiles are delicate and need protecting. If you don’t want to end up paying a fortune for a new model, then you’ll need to consider your options. And remember that it’s the rare insurance policy that covers accidental mobile damage.

Photo Credit: 1, 2 and 3.