May 27, 2010

Invisible Shield

[Soundtrack: Human Earth - "Don't you want me?"]

"iPhone Cover" was on my To-Do list for the last month. A few days ago, I dropped $25 at Best Buy and purchased The Invisible Shield. After experiencing every conceivable emotion in the human body, I am finally in a capable mind frame of detailing the experience.

Before the Invisible Shield, there was a cheap AT&T screen cover and a decent case from the Apple store. Before that was the same cheap screen cover and a worthless AT&T rubber cover. Before those accessories and the iPhone, was the Nokia 1100.

I had the thing since high school. I went through two other phones after it, but came back to it for sloppy thirds after the other two bit the dust. The Nokia had two roles. Make/receive phone calls and text message people. In order to send a text, I would have to press the same key several times for the correct letter to come up. For example, if I wanted to type "ABC" I would have to press the #2 key once for A, wait a second, then press it twice for B, wait a second, and then press it three times for C. At some point, my inner self said balls to this and the rest is history.

Once I got the iPhone, I had to change my habits of destroying electronic devices to giving the damned thing the rubber glove treatment. iPhone goes in one pocket. Keys go in other pocket. Do not throw iPhone out of window while driving down the highway. When I got home after buying the iPhone, I cleared off my table like I was prepping a crime scene investigation. Before I even powered up the phone, I wanted to get the screen protector on it so that I wouldn't scratch the screen. Since they wouldn't do this for me in the store, it was up to me to carry out this impossible task. The screen a bitch in itself to peal off of the wrapper. Then comes the tricky part, because I have to set it exactly in the right place on the iPhone screen. While doing so, I can't get anything on the phone as well as fingerprints on the inside of the protective screen. Well I did both. And I had to peal it off several times and adjust where it was on the phone. Additionally, I got a bad case of Parkinson's and couldn't stop my hands from shaking for the life of me. In the end, I had the screen on there in the right spot, but I had soaked up enough finger grease on one corner of the screen so that the top left edge would not stick to the phone. Fair enough. As the days went on, this became severely annoying because I spent most of my time smoothing out the edges and rubbing out bubbles to no avail. At some point, I made a trek down to the Apple store in Cincinnati to look for a new case for the phone because the rubbery piece of shit I had was not doing it for me. I ended up getting a nice case that did a good job of holding the troublesome non-stick corner in place. But it still was an eyesore to look at on a daily basis. This brings us up to a month ago when I decided that it was time to find a better alternative. I normally don't let such petty things get to me, but this little greased up, pealed back, un-cooperative screen cover was really stressing me out. I don't want any air bubbles on the screen. I don't want a dirty phone. I want something that is slick and clean. Enter the Invisible Shield?

I did some research and the Invisible Shield seemed to be what I was looking for. It's basically indestructible. You can take a chainsaw to it and it won't scratch the surface. Plus it has a lifetime warranty. It also had a user-friendly, encouraging Youtube video on how to mate the Invisible Shield and iPhone for eternity.

Prior to installing the Invisible Shield, I watched the video about five times. Wow. It looks so easy. Just put down a paper towel, peal the shield off, douse it with the special spray, plant it on the phone, squeegee it off, and rule the world. Right?

Ummm. No.

The only part I succeed at was getting a paper towel. The Invisible Shield took a few minutes to peal back from the paper, probably due to the Parkinson's that's kicked in. I sprayed it down and put it on my phone. Wrong spot, try again. Nope, that's off. Do over. Third time is a charm right. No dice. I'm not sure how many attempts I took at it, but there was at least 20. The whole time I was paranoid because I knew if I fucked it up I was throwing $25 down the drain. Eventually I got it in a spot that was acceptable. Unlike the video, I had a number of bubbles on the screen. I smoothed a lot of them out with the squeegee, but there was a couple spots that were impossible to get once the spray solution started to dry. I did the best I could but eventually threw in the white towel and called it quits for the night. The next day, I spent every idle moment at work and at home trying to smooth out the bubbles. There are about three bubbles that are big problems. The rest are tiny bubbles that will hopefully disappear after 2-3 days as the instructions proclaim. Tomorrow is day three. And it's looking bleak. At some point, the squeegee doesn't do the trick anymore. Due to the texture of the Invisible shield, attempting to smooth out anything with a credit card is null and void since, after all, its built to resist getting punched in the dong. So I am left with my thumbs and fingernails. I have tried every possible combination of smoothing out with my thumb/fingernail combo to get these bastard bubbles out. If I had to take a shot in the dark I would say I've got about 10 hours wrapped up in this process. My thumbs feel like I just escaped from a prison camp in 'Nam where I had bamboo sticks shoved under my fingernails in some sort of torture sequence.

So here I am. The top left corner greasy nuisance is yesterday's news. But now I have several new eyesores to look at. I guess I have the peace of mind of knowing that if I drop my phone into a blender the screen will be protected, but that doesn't lighten the mood since there's bubbles on my screen that I can't get rid of. Bubbles.