The iWrap Dry Body Wrap Protector for the iPhone 4 (Verizon and AT&T) is a full coverage (more or less) wrap system that applies without any liquids. This is a much saner method than those previous wet-application systems, as in the Wrapsol review I did a few years ago, and the results are at least as good, if not better. The iWrap system uses a simple two piece backing method of separating the large front and back panels from their backing for application without fingerprints, and it includes small bits that wrap around the outside edge to provide scratch protection and coverage of the antenna gap for the AT&T iPhone.
Inside The Envelope
Opening up the envelope inside the retail shelf friendly package gives you all you need to do the install, which the iWrap folks claim can be done in about two minutes. I’ll admit that I’m perhaps the worst person on the planet at applying these things (despite lots of practice) and having to grab a camera after each step did slow me down, but even with all that I think it was less then ten minutes for me.
In the shot above you see the manual, the strips for the side bits (which are a lot harder to extract from their backing!) a squeegee, the front and back panels, and a lint-free cloth. After a quick scan of the manual and a lot of cleaning of my iPhone, I was ready to go
Beginning with the front, you remove the blue section of backing:
Place that part down on the iPhone, getting it lined up. Since the rest of the panel still has backing on it, it’s very easy to remove and reposition if you’re not happy with the alignment. Once you are happy you begin pulling the white side off, starting with the folded over tab:
This will make a tent over your iPhone. Grab that squeegee and gently run it down the iPhone:
When you’re at the bottom, you’re nearly done. The large panels have an additional protective layer on the front that you remove after applying.
It took a couple attempts for me to get it to start peeling up from a corner, but eventually:
Once one side is done, repeat for the other. Then, the small side bits go on to fill in the coverage except for all buttons, holes, and the SIM door. The final side bits once applied provide good coverage:
SIM door, and
Top headphone, noise canceling mic, and power/sleep button.
The idea with these side pieces is that it’s not that big a deal if you get a few fingerprints on the underside of them, so the delivery system is vastly simpler – you pick out the cutout bits from a lager section of the wrap sheet with your fingernails, and then stick them on.
This isn’t a shortcoming of the iWrap system alone, any wrap system like this provides great protection to the flat areas of glass and metal – giving you that “naked” feel and beauty with a little less terror of scratches. These wrap systems also provide decent drop protection, with the exception of side impact to the glass. You can see in the photos above showing the side coverage that the sides of the front and back glass panels are still exposed – a blow to this area in an unlucky drop is one of the most common ways to get a broken glass panel, and the iWrap (or most any other wrap) isn’t going to help you in that event.
Clarity, Grippyness, Glare
Ok, so even I can get the iWrap onto an iPhone, which indicates it’s a fairly idiot proof install system. How does it actually feel to use the iPhone iWrapped? It feels quite good, actually. The material provides a bit more grip in my hand, which made it feel more secure in the hand. The somewhat matte finish reduced glare (and clarity, as a negative) and hid fingerprints quite well. The phone slid in and out of a pants pocket smoothly. Touch sensitivity isn’t impacted noticeably.
The installation documents include the reminder that the film will get clearer after a day or too, and that was my experience:
I never seem to be able to avoid all bubbles, but the “tent” method used in the documentation kept my inevitable bubbles off to the ends, where they more or less disappeared.
The iWrap system for iPhone 4 comes in specific versions for Verizon and AT&T iPhones. I believe the only difference is in the side pieces, but be sure to get the one for your version if you decide to buy it. At $19.95 for the full wrap coverage the iWrap is priced well. The application system is easy, and the results are good.