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Belkin Matte Screen Guards/Protectors (Overlays) for 10.1-Inch Samsung Galaxy Tab

March 13th, 2012 Leave a comment Go to comments

4 stars
Belkin Matte Screen Protector

The Belkin Matte Screen Protector for the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 is a screen protector with anti-glare properties. I normally don’t use screen protectors on the Samsung Galaxy Tab, but was curious how well the Belkin would do against glare on the glossy screen.

PROS

  • Does very well against glare
  • Relatively easy to install
  • Comes with 2 overlays
  • Retains most of the touch screen’s sensitivity

CONS

  • Reduces screen clarity

I’ve installed a ton of screen protectors on phones, digital cameras, and tablets. In general, I prefer the clear protectors. I tried a “privacy” protector once on my Android phone and hated it. It made the screen dark and made the beautiful screen look dull. I didn’t have high hopes for the Belkin Matte overlay, due to my past experiences with non-clear screen protectors, but came away pleasantly surprised.

INSTALLATION
As I mentioned, I have a lot of experience installing screen protectors, so I know how difficult they can be to get just right.  That said, I thought the installation of the Belkin Matte overlay was fairly easy.  The included microfiber cloth did a good job of cleaning off the screen before applying the overlay.  Following Belkin’s  recommendations, I peeled the small tab in the corner of the overlay, just a bit, then aligned it to the corner of the tablet, before peeling the rest of the plastic off.  This worked out well, except that I thought that the overlay would cover the entire screen, so I aligned it right up to the edge.  It turns out, there’s maybe 1mm on each side of the tablet that isn’t covered by the overlay.  I carefully removed the overlay and realigned it so that the uncovered space was even on all sides.

Belkin Matte overlay- screen off

The inevitable air bubbles were pretty easy to remove with the included applicator card.  After removing most of the air bubbles, I still had a few remaining dust bubbles. I used the applicator card to carefully peel the corners of the overlay from the screen, then used magic Scotch tape to remove the dust. In the end, the application was absolutely perfect––no trapped air bubbles or dust. The imperfections in the photos (bottom corners) are from trying to place the Galaxy Tab in the Samsung media dock.

Belkin Matte overlay- screen on

PERFORMANCE
The Belkin Matte overlay does a very good job of reducing glare. The glossy glass screen on the Galaxy Tab normally is tough to view in sunny or well-lit environments. With the overlay on, it was noticeably easier to view the screen. The overlay also does a good job of combating fingerprints and smudges. Screen sensitivity was good as well. Unfortunately, as with most matte screen protectors, it reduced screen clarity. This was most obvious with small text on bright backgrounds. Checking email in my Gmail app looked off, but at least I could read it without having to tilt the screen every which way. And that’s just the thing with matte screen protectors; there’s going to be a give and take. You gain anti-glare, but lose some clarity.

Belkin Matte overlay- up

MISCELLANEOUS
This probably won’t apply to a lot of people, but for those that invested in the Samsung media dock for the Galaxy Tab 10.1, the Belkin matte overlay doesn’t appear to be compatible. There’s a piece of plastic on each side of the dock that is so precise, that when you go to insert the Galaxy Tab, it snags on the overlay and peels off the corners.

CONCLUSION
The Belkin Matte overlay for Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 does exactly what you’d expect it to do. It protects the screen and reduces glare by a significant amount. It’s also pretty easy to install. Keep in mind, however, like most matte overlays, it will impact screen clarity. It’s definitely not for everyone, but if you feel like your Galaxy Tab is unusable because of the glare, the Belkin Matte overlay could be your solution.

Available from Amazon.com.

* Review sample provided by Amazon.com.

  1. Alex
    January 6th, 2013 at 20:44 | #1

    I wasted money on two of these and can honestly say, this is a terrible product and definitely not recommended.
    I have fitted a fair few screens ad this one is easily the worst. Its attracting air bubbles during application like manure is attractig flies, probably because of the fairly rigid nature of this screen. Furthermore it attracts dust particles like no other screen I have ever seen and these ones are hard to completely remove, even with the dust removal tape provided. Its furthermore lacking anything like an adequate description of the application process, just three meaningless and incomplete pictures are shown on the back of the packaging.
    As pointed out in the article, fit is poor. It does not cover the entire screen, which creates further stress during fitting and result in a cheap look even after correct fitting.

    Good: Anti-Glare.
    Bad: Ill-fitting, horrible application process with high likelihood of bubbles and dust on screen.

    Definitely not recommended.

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