We check out a multi-port charger and phone cradle from Belkin…
Accessories maker Belkin has a couple of products to make it easier (and safer) to use and charge your phone in your car.
In this day and age when it’s a requirement to use your phone hands free while driving, there is often no formal location to place your smartphone in current vehicles and requires the use of a cradle.
The Belkin Car Vent Mount does exactly that and mounts directly onto your air conditioning vents. A cradle that affixes to a vent is firm and reliable without being permanent.
I have one of the suction cup cradles, and while it does the job, it can fall off and gets in the way when you try to wind down the window.
Holding the phone in place are retractable clasps that extend in both directions to a maximum of 8.5cm. The spring is smooth to open with just the right amount of tension.
Phone orientation can be adjusted to portrait or landscape with 360 degree rotation.
Also on the back is a lesson in smart design with a cable holder – two slots on either side of centre to clip in your charging cable neatly and tangle free. This holder swivels independently to the rotation of the unit.
While your smartphone is sitting happily in the cradle, you can charge it with the Belkin Road RockStar.
This allows you charge up to four devices simultaneously!
The customary 12V charger plug houses two 1.2amp USB sockets which is not remarkable but what its connected to is.
At the other end of the 1.8m cable is another charging unit with two more 2.4amp USB sockets intended for back seat passengers to charge their devices.
So no one in the car will have a flat battery and go without a place to charge their phone.
Usually of little consequence, I must make mention of the smart packaging provided by Belkin.
Each box has a preview flap on the outside with a couple of small magnets built it to ensure it stays closed and not waving about while the tray on the inside has a tag making it quick and easy to remove your new toy.
The Belkin Car Vent Mount retails for $29.95 and the Road RockStar is priced at $59.95.
Both products are available from the Belkin website.