Installing a screen saver yourself is one of the worst things ever, possibly worse than stubbing your toe. It’s so bad I went to an Apple Store and paid them $42.75 to do it for me. I regret nothing.

Anyone who’s tried to install a screen protector knows exactly what I’m talking about: it can never line up correctly, and dust particles always seem to work their way under the screen protector just as you put it on.

I finally threw in the towel and went to an Apple Store, where I knew they had special little accessories that can install a screen protector perfectly every time on your fancy new iPhone. The results are always fantastic.

A Closer Look At Those Special Little Doohickies

The screen protector applicators you see in Apple stores are actually of Belkin’s design, called the ScreenCare+ Application System.

It’s as easy as placing the iPhone and screen protector in the grooves (which line everything up for you), closing the case, then removing the protective films. A trained seal could probably do it.

The ScreenCare+ system is owned by Apple stores, though T-Mobile stores carry something similar from Belkin as well. Unfortunately, the public can’t afford these devices themselves, so we peasants are stuck doing it the old-fashioned way.

You can buy screen protectors that come with cheap little frames that make it a bit easier to line up the screen protector, but it’s not the same as Belkin’s application systems.

You are paying for the service

When you go to an Apple store and look at their screen protectors on sale, it’s easy to balk at the $39.95 price of Belkin’s InvisiGlass Ultra tempered glass screen protector. After all, no one in their right mind would spend $39.95 on a screen saver with the intention of installing it themselves. Instead, most of us would go to Amazon and buy something like this. $14 three-pack of tempered glass screen protectors from an unnamed brand, which is just $4.67 per screen protector.

But here’s the catch: Apple will install “free” screen protectors as long as you buy one from the Apple Store. So really, you should think more along the lines of the installation service being included in the price. That’s not a bad deal after all is said and done.

So really, when you pay a little over $40 (with tax) for a screen protector at an Apple Store, you’re really paying mostly for the convenience of Apple installing it for you. At least it makes me feel a little better. thinking about it. that way. I would never spend that much on a screen protector if I had to install it myself.