The Holy Grail screen protector can defend against key scratches, scissor stabs and five-foot drops, but do not use it to stop a bullet.
The accessory, created by Seattle company Sir Lancelot's Armor, went on sale this week. The company boasts that the Holy Grail, made from "bulletproof" laminated tempered glass, is the perfect defense for tablet and smartphone users looking for protection for their device without giving up style points by purchasing a bulky case.
The Holy Grail is available for numerous top-flight devices, ranging from Apple's latest iPhone and iPads to Samsung's Galaxy S and Galaxy Note smartphones. The prices for the screen protectors range from about $28 to $55, depending on which device the user wants to protect.
I tested the screen protector by placing it on two of my devices: an iPhone 5 and a Galaxy S 4. For me, the Holy Grail seemed perfect since I don't like to carry my smartphone with a case on. The screen protector added an extra protective layer without making my devices too chunky -- at most, it adds about a millimeter of thickness.
Sticking the screen protector on a phone is very easy, and unlike other screen protectors, users aren't left with annoying bubbles between their smartphone screen and the protector. That's because the Holy Grail is a piece of glass, not a floppy piece of plastic like other products on the market. The Holy Grail can also be removed and replaced a few times without having to worry about the adhesive no longer sticking.
To test the product, I took my keys and roughly rubbed them against the Holy Grail. Later, I handed my device and a pair of scissors to my friend, telling her to have at it. She quickly took to stabbing the Holy Grail with the scissors. Fortunately, no damage was done.
I also dropped my device on various surfaces. The Holy Grail did a good job protecting the gadget, but on the last fall, which happened on a tile floor, the device nearly landed on its edge. That caused the corner of the screen protector to crack, but it protected my phone, leaving it in fine working condition.
Fortunately for users who purchase a Holy Grail screen protector, the product comes with a lifetime warranty. So if the screen protector does break, users can contact the company and have it replaced.
That's a great benefit because the Holy Grail is certainly not invincible. I easily managed to break both of the screen protectors I was testing.
The one on my iPhone broke after I tried taking it off of the device. It seems that dropping the phone on the tile floor left the Holy Grail brittle, causing the crack to spread as I attempted to remove the screen protector.
I obliterated my other Holy Grail screen protector when I took the GS4 down to the LAX Firing Range -- there was no way we weren't going to shoot a product made out of "bulletproof" glass. The staff at the gun range helped me tape the Samsung phone onto a target board that I then shot at from about 12 feet away.
Sir Lancelot's Armor told me that they have shot the Holy Grail on smartphones from longer distances and seen the two items survive, but that was not the case in my experience from a short range. After missing a few shots, I finally nailed the GS4 near its bottom right corner. The 9mm round I fired from a Glock 17 handgun went straight through the Holy Grail and left a gaping hole in the Samsung device. (The phone somehow still manages to turn on despite suffering a pretty serious gunshot wound)
My verdict on the Holy Grail is that it's a good product. In fact, it's one of the only screen protectors that I would recommend to anyone. The accessory adds protection without compromising a smartphone's design. But users who are looking for something that will completely protect their smartphones should look elsewhere. The Holy Grail doesn't offer any sort of protection for the back or sides of a smartphone or tablet.
And if you need something capable of stopping bullets, definitely do not rely on the Holy Grail.