Tempered glass vs Hydrogel
If there are two phone protectors that have been compared over and over again, those are the hydrogel protectors versus the tempered glass protectors. Both are widely used, but there are clear differences between one and the other. In this article we are going to discover which of them you should choose to have greater protection on your smartphone.
Tempered glass and its impossible relationship with curved screens
As we already saw in the previous article in which we explained what hydrogel is, one of its most outstanding characteristics is that it adapts to any type of screen, regardless of whether it is flat or curved. This does not happen with tempered glass.
When we use a tempered glass protector on curved screens, the glass cannot cover the entire screen due to its rigidity, thus leaving a bare edge around your screen. On the other hand, the hydrogel, due to its flexibility, can adapt to the curves, completely covering the screen.
They fit the blows differently
When tempered glass receives a blow and breaks, we must be very careful, since, as its name suggests, it is glass, and as such, it cuts and we can hurt ourselves by removing it or sticking some of its small crystals into it.
On the other hand, the hydrogel, being a soft surface, the impact of the blow is very different. The blow is absorbed and can be regenerated, leaving the protector as new. Also, when removing it you don’t have to worry about anything, you just pull and the protector will come off right away.
Fingerprint reader failure
It is increasingly common for the fingerprint reader to unlock your smartphone to be on the screen itself, as iPhones can have. Depending on the protector you choose, fingerprint reading may be infallible or, on the contrary, it may prevent you from correctly reading your fingerprint. This is mainly due to the thickness of the protectors.
The hydrogel has a minimum thickness, thus facilitating infallible reading of the print. On the other hand, tempered glass, being thicker, often makes it difficult to read the fingerprint, reaching the point that it is completely inoperative. That is why if your fingerprint reader is on the screen, take this factor into account.
Hydrogel as back protector
Another notable difference is that hydrogel is much more versatile than tempered glass. While the second can only be applied to screens, the hydrogel can be placed both in front of and behind your smartphone to protect it from bumps and scratches. In addition, there are different rear hydrogel designs, to be able to personalize your mobile and give it a different touch.
Hydrogel takes longer to install than tempered glass
You may have heard that hydrogel is more complex to install. Perhaps in some specific cases, especially in curved phones, for the finish to be perfect you must heat it with a gun so that it is fully integrated. However, if you follow the steps correctly, you will have a quick installation of the hydrogel without any bubbles.
As for tempered glass, it is true that the installation is faster; you take the sheet, adjust it to the screen and put it on. However, you are much more likely to have bubbles and not a perfect finish as is the case with hydrogel.
Without a doubt, this is the difference that creates the most controversy. The price of tempered glass is around €3, while a sheet of hydrogel can cost you around €10. It is possible that seeing this difference you prefer to spend less money, but if we think in the long term, the hydrogel is a better option.
As we have said, the hydrogel acts in a very different way from blows. While the glass breaks if it receives a blow, the hydrogel absorbs that blow and self-regenerates over the hours, leaving it as good as new. In addition, with the hydrogel you can protect the entirety of your mobile, while the tempered glass, if you have a curved screen, the screen will not be fully protected.
Finally, if after having read all these differences between tempered glass and hydrogel you are still in doubt about which one to choose, here is a resistance test that we did on both protectors, so that you can clear up your doubts. We are clear about our winner!