Some people love their phones “naked” – without any protection. No case, no screen protectors.
Not me. I like to have a solid grip on my phone, particularly when it comes to the biggest phone I’ve owned, the Samsung Note 20 Ultra.
It’s an investment worth protecting even though the glass slabs are made with the Victus edition of Gorilla glass.
So today we’ll do a cover-up of sorts: one with Samsung’s Official Clear View Cover Case, followed by the Spigen Slim Armor CS with some extra protection from Olixar’s Screen and Camera Protectors.
Case 1. Samsung Official Clear View Cover
The Clear View covers have been part and parcel of my last half a dozen Samsung Galaxy flagships.
So you may say I’m slightly biased toward Sammy’s great fitting case with the most info available to us when the case is closed.
This year’s edition is slightly different and went from a full screen display to just a sliver of info available in a vertical format.
When I first saw that I wasn’t sure I’d be a fan, particularly with the time is displayed sideways.
After a few weeks of testing I still am not fully convinced of the wisdom of changing that display format. It’s not only much smaller than the previous few S View cases with less info to see but also only readable in landscape format.
Initially, the info, like the clock and date is only visible for a few seconds after you close the case… I liked the Always On feature because it is supposed to be “always on” but finally I found a way to keep it on 24/7 or as scheduled.
Not having to open the case when a call comes in is very handy as the clear view strip is touch compatible.
Apart from that gripe the new Samsung case is the best case to feel in your hands. The very finely “webbed” structure of the flip case has an antimicrobial coating, based on zinc pyrithione, which is supposed to give some level of protection against microbes. Not Covid 19 in case you thought so.
That protection, with the PhoneSoap Steriliser device which we will review shortly as well, will be great in these challenging times.
This flip case is not as slippery as the older editions, hardly adding any bulk or weight and gives a reasonable amount of protection in case of drops.
The Official Clear View Cover Case from Samsung is a magnificent statement of elegance, practicality and protection.
Not cheap but well worth the investment.
At about 80 Aussie bucks it is one of the more expensive cases around.
Have a look at MobileZap for more info on this magnificent case.
Case 2. Spigen Slim Armor CS
Spigen is one of the top brands when it comes to protection of our phones, tablets and wearables.
Thanks to MobileZap, the Aussie accessories supplier, we get to test the Slim Armor CS case as well.
This is a card-carrying super protector of your 2000 dollar phone. So for not even 50 bucks you get the following features:
In order of what matters most, here’s the shortlist.
* Mil-grade certified drop protection with Air Cushion Technology.
* Has a “secret” sliding compartment to store some credit cards or ID or some cash.
* Protects the camera bump well with an extra raise.
* Is compatible with wireless charging and Spigen screen protectors.
* Has accessible cutouts and tactile buttons for a smooth click response.
Please note that while this case doesn’t give a full protection for the all-important screen it does prevent scratches and other damage to the display in normal use.
If you drop it and it lands face down on rocky ground or on sharp objects, all bets are off. That’s why good screen protectors are a must with both the front and the array of cameras on that hump at the back. Spigen already mentioned that this case is fully compatible with their own screen protectors (as they should be) but we’re reviewing some protectors from that other top brand, Olixar, here below.
The Spigen Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra 4G/5G Slim Armor CS Case in gunmetal features a back compartment that can hold up to 2 credit cards or IDs. It is constructed with the Air Cushion Technology that gives extreme shock absorption and device protection.
This is a great idea, like a hidden compartment for some essential cards. It’s so good that I wonder why they didn’t also utilise the space next to the camera hump as well? Plenty of room for something small like a house key…
The Spigen case is very well constructed with great attention to detail.
The only problem is that it’s too slippery for my fingers. I like a solid grip not just a case that protect your phones from a fall but helps prevent me from dropping it in places I can’t retrieve it from…
All the ports are easily accessible and so is the S pen.
The Spigen Slim Armor CS Case is recommended for those who like their full display immediately accessible rather than a flip case.
Check out the MobileZap page for this product.
Item 3. Olixar Ultra Tough Tempered Glass Screen Protector.
Lastly, let’s have a look at another top brand, Olixar, and their companion to any non-flip case: a full screen protection for front and the camera hump at the back.
Me and screen protectors have an unhappy history.
I don’t think I’ve ever been able to apply a plastic protective film on any of my phones without bubbles being visible or corners curling up…
Fortunately, with glass things are different, it seems, so time to try it with one of the best screen protectors I could find: The Olixar Ultra Tough Tempered Glass Screen Protector.
First some standout features:
High-tension 9H tempered glass construction for enhanced shock protection. The screen cannot shatter under extreme pressures unlike normal glass.
This glass screen protector is ultra clear and has a 95% light penetration ratio, compared to plastic screen protectors that generally have an 80% light penetration ratio.
0.27mm thickness adds minimal bulk to your phone. That’s an imperceptible quarter of a millmetre!
Very easy installation with no risk of bubbles.
As this is a tempered glass screen protector and not a film it does not bubble at all on application. In addition, the coating allows for easy removal should the protector get damaged.
Follow the instructions and you can’t go wrong.
On the box is a QR code that gets you to the Olixar install videos.
The site is not updated for the Note 20 series but the videos are pretty generic. Everything is provided in the box: alcohol wipe, cleaning cloth and the incredible thin glass protector.
Don’t forget to take off the plastic Samsung film protector first!
Lining up the protector is probably the hardest thing of an otherwise very easy install.
It covers nearly 100% of the display. I think there’s about 1mm around the edges that are not fully covered.
Yes, there are no bubbles. However, when I put it on the thinner circular area that goes over the fingerprint reader was very visible. It looked like an “oily” patch underneath that I hoped would go away over time! And it did. It took a few hours so the circle is not as visible as before and certainly not as “oily” but now I can see that fingerprint area quite well under certain angles.
Sensitivity has slightly diminished but that can also be increased with the software. I have not found a need to do so.
I also applied a camera protective screen on the cameras. Again, lining up was a bit tricky because it’s such a tiny sheet and my efforts resulted in a slightly skewed outcome.
On the whole, I’m pretty pleased with these Olixar solutions to protect all that expensive glass.
For Aussies the costs is very reasonable:
The big screen will cover you for just 33 bucks
and the Twin Pack Camera covers you get for half that price.
As always, even if you have a different phone, the folks at MobileZap have you covered.They have the most extensive range of accessories you can imagine.
In a follow up review we’ll test out the PhoneSoap 3 ultraviolet phone sanitiser. Check back soon!