Two Zagg brands, InvisibleShield and Gear4, have products that will not only keep your Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G protected from drops and scratches, they’ve also been given an anti-bacterial treatment that can “kill up to 99.9% of common surface bacteria.”
We’ve all been guilty of using our phones in places where they’re likely to pick up germs (i.e., the bathroom, the kitchen, on the subway, at work, outside, etc.), so it’s cool to know that the Gear4 cases and InvisibleShield screen protectors have technology baked into them to help keep germs from living on their surfaces. Even so, it’s important to differentiate between any case’s and/or screen protector’s claims that they’ve been treated to inhibit microbial growth (true) versus a mental leap that might be made by people seeing that claim and thinking that these cases and screen protectors can kill COVID-19 on contact (false). No matter what case or screen protector you put on your phone, if you leave the house and want to make sure that your phone does not return with Coronavirus spores on it, you’ll need to disinfect it when you get home. Period.
So without further ado, let’s take a look at the cases and protectors I sent.
If you prefer a bit more drop protection with a grippier design, the $49.99 Gear4 Battersea is a great choice. Made to withstand drops up to 16′, the Battersea has a textured back panel and soft-touch finish that remains slimmer and lighter than expected.
The case has extra D3O material on its back for enhanced protection, and yet you can still wirelessly charge your phone when it is in this case.
You’ll note that the Gear4 Battersea has slightly raised bevels for face-down display protection, but equally importantly, it offers protection for the Ultra’s huge camera array when you’re laying your phone down. After a friend of mine managed to crack the glass covering her Pixel 4 XL’s square camera array while it was in a case, I’ve become super cautious about putting my phone in a case that doesn’t offer camera array protection. ALL of the Gear4 cases offer excellent protection for the Ultra’s ridiculously oversized camera array.
The $44.99 Gear4 Holburn case is probably my favorite of the four we’re looking at today. It’s built similarly to the Battersea, but it has a smooth matte black rubberized coating on the entire case, so it is grippable and protective without feeling overly large or bulky. Again, D3O material is used to provide enhanced protection for the sides and back in up to a 13′ drop.
As with the other Gear4 cases, all of the cutouts on the Holborn are large enough for easy access.
Again, the case extends just enough around the display and the camera array to provide excellent face down protection for both. Even though the Holborn is extra protective, you can still wirelessly charge your Ultra when it is in this case.
The Iridescent Gear4 Crystal Palace is the unicorn of the collection; made to withstand a drop of up to 13′, the Crystal Palace offers edge-to-edge protection in a slim, clear design that has D3O material integrated. The back is a strong piece of polycarbonate which will help protect the phone from drops and scratches while still allowing wireless charging.
When not on your phone, the Crystal Palace in iridescent has a yellowing/pink case to it, but the magic happens when the case is on your phone.
Once on your Ultra, the Crystal Palace gives a green to purple shimmer on the sides (once again, there is sufficient bumper around the display for face-down protection), but the back of the phone is transformed into a shimmery purple/green/blue that changes color depending upon the light and how you hold the phone up to the light.
If the iridescent is a bit much for you, the Crystal Palace is also available in clear.
It’s been a while since I installed a film screen protector as opposed to a glass one, but one of the benefits to using the $44.99 InvisibleShield Ultra VisionGuard+ screen protector on an S20 Ultra is that you don’t have to worry about a harsh drop-off between the edge of the screen protector and the curve of display’s side. It’s a little trickier to install, but once on, the screen protector feels like glass under your fingertips, yet it won’t randomly crack or lift like some glass screen protectors are prone to doing. Everything is included in the kit for a clean install; there’s the screen protector, a clear plastic tray for lining things up during install, a microfiber cloth, an alcohol wipe, a handy and reusable plastic squeegee, and dust stickers.
Let’s run through some of the reasons why the InvisibleShield Ultra VisionGuard+ is a great choice for your phone on top of the antibacterial treatment … it gives your display edge-to-edge shatter protection, it repels dust and fingerprints, its EyeSafe layer filters blue light without distorting the color on your display, and it uses self-healing nanotechnology to make minor scratches and dings disappear. Installation is a multi-part endeavor that is easier done than explained.
But here’s the gist:
- If you haven’t already removed the protector that came installed on the Ultra, go ahead and do that. I’m going to assume that you scratched it, and that’s why it needs replacing. 😉
- Place your phone in the alignment tray; make sure it is settled in there snugly.
- Peel away the protective backing on the film. There are pegs at the top and bottom of the installation tray; the film’s ends will fit into those pegs for the installation process.
- Run the squeegee lightly up and down the screen protector 2 to 3 times to “activate the dust removal layer.”
- Peel back the top tab (#2) from the protector; run the squeegee from the middle of the screen to the top. This will automatically lift and push off the protective backing.
- Turn the tray and do the same thing to the bottom half of the phone.
- Peel tab 4 away from the phone’s display and use the microfiber cloth to smooth out any remaining bubbles.
I have a couple of bubbles that I’ll work on if they haven’t disappeared in a day or two, but otherwise, the protector is on. I’m not 100% thrilled with my installation because of the bubbles — again, I haven’t done a film install in years — but I think it came out well!
The beauty of all of InvisibleShield screen protectors is that you can register them on their site; for a $5.99 shipping fee, if your protector ever needs replacing for any reason, Zagg will take care of you.
So … will Gear4 cases and InvisibleShield screen protectors kill the virus that causes COVID-19? No. You need to be a bit more fastidious to kill this virus. Will these products kill common surface bacteria for the life of the case or screen protector? Yes. Will you have any way of testing that? No. So the best thing to do if you are concerned about the cleanliness of your phone during this pandemic is to wash your hands regularly and wipe down your phone (and its case) well with an alcohol-based wipe or a spray containing at least 70% alcohol used with a soft cloth. Gear4 cases and InvisibleShield screen protectors will protect your phone and its display from drops and scratches — and that’s really all we need or should expect from any case or screen protector.
You can view a list of all of Zagg’s antibacterial products for the Samsung Galaxy S20 series by clicking here.
Source: Manufacturer supplied review sample