If you have a tablet or smartphone, it’s probably not cheap.
I mean, you can pay up to a thousand pounds for one (not that I did – but you can).
And even the cheaper ones still aren’t what you’d call pocket change.
So I can understand why people want to protect them, as well as get the most out of them.
So people sometimes ask me “What do you think about cases and screen protectors – should I get them for my tablet or phone?”
Well, to quote Sir Humphrey, “Yes and no”.
(Do you remember the comedy TV series from the 80s – Yes Minister and Yes Prime Minister? It had Sir Humphrey as the senior civil servant who when asked to give a yes or no answer would say “Yes AND no, minister”.)
But I think my answer might be more help than Sir Humphrey’s.
Taking cases first, it depends on where you’re using the device. If you have a tablet and only use it at home, then you might not be so bothered about a case. It’s still possible to drop it, though, so I’d probably say a case is a good idea… and I’d definitely recommend one for a smartphone, however careful you are.
So for cases “Probably yes, unless you’re only ever using your tablet at home and are really careful.”
For screen protectors, again my answer is “yes and no”.
A screen protector sticks on the screen and protects it against scratches and so on. It can be handy, especially if you have a cheaper phone or tablet with a softer screen. But the main reason I don’t have a clear yes or no is because it depends on what type of case you have.
If you have the type of case that’s like a sort of wallet and folds over to completely cover the phone or tablet when it’s not in use, then I personally wouldn’t bother about a screen protector. The case will protect the screen when you’re not using it and generally when you are using it you’re less likely to scratch it with anything. Up to you of course, but that’s my view.
On the other hand if you have the type of case that fits around the back and sides of the phone or tablet but doesn’t cover the screen at all, you might want to get a screen protector, particularly if you carry the device when you’re out and about – whether it’s in a pocket or a bag, something might rub up against the screen… or it might get dropped or whatever.
So if you have a case that doesn’t cover the screen then you might want a protector.
While I’m answering questions, we’ve had several questions from readers about the new “Tablets Made Simple” course we’ve just launched (along with nice comments from people who’ve already joined the course) – and the answers might be something you’d find helpful to know, too, so here you are:
Some questions from readers of these emails… and the answers
I’m not sure what type my tablet is – can I check whether I have an Android or an iPad somehow?
Yes – the simplest way is to look at the back of the tablet (after taking the case off if it’s in one – iPads have a picture of an Apple on. Or you can look at this webpage, which helps you tell.
But either way, don’t worry, because when you join the course you get access to both versions – so whichever you have, you can’t join the wrong one! (And if you ever change to the other type, you’ve still got the course.)
Is it hard? I’m no tech-whizz-kid and don’t want to feel out of my depth.
Don’t worry – it carefully explains everything nice and simply, showing you exactly how to do things, so it makes everything as easy as possible. You’ll probably be surprised at how much you learn, but it shouldn’t feel hard or like you’re doing some kind of formal course – more like sitting down for a chat (you’ll have to make your own cup of tea to go with it though!)
Is there a time limit on when I have to start the course?
No – you can start straight away or leave it to later. Once you’re enrolled in the course you have complete access for as long as the course is online (at least 3 years), so you can join now and then start it whenever you like.
Do I have to work through it at set times?
No – it’s not like an evening class in that way. You can work through each part or “lesson” whenever it suits you. Do it in the evenings, the mornings or even the middle of the night if you like!
You can even get halfway through a lesson and stop there and carry on again next time from wherever you got to – you’re in control.
Can you follow the course on a different device – eg a desktop PC or a laptop?
Yes. You don’t actually have to use a tablet to follow the course. You can if you like or you can use a PC or laptop if that helps. You might want to follow it sat at your desktop PC – up to you.
In fact you can even use two different devices – you can log in on your desktop when you’re at it, then use an iPad to carry on when you go back to it.
Are you selling the course?
Yes we are – it’s from us, not something we’re promoting for someone else or anything like that. And yes, we do charge for it (though having looked around at what the nearest other courses sell for, we might be undercharging) – after the work and cost that went into creating this there’s no way we could offer it without charging.
So, yes, we’re selling it. Only until the 10th July, though. After that we’ll be closing enrolment so you won’t be able to join – best get in before then if you think it might help you.
The full details (including how to join and the rather unusual guarantee) are here – why not have a read.