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Gear We Love: Nite Ize iOS accessories for your bike, desk, and bag

Dan Frakes | July 2, 2014
There's a lot of gear out there for your Apple devices, but how do you know which are worth your time and what's not worth your money? In our Gear We Love column, Macworld's editors tell you about the products we're personally using--and loving.

QuikStand Mobile Stand

Back in April, my colleague Serenity Caldwell reviewed the $26 Pocket Tripod, a tiny, fold-up iPhone stand she discovered at the Macworld/iWorld show. Nite Ize offers a similar take, but for quite a bit less — $10, to be exact.

Like the Pocket Tripod, the QuikStand Mobile Device Stand is about the size of a business card: 3.4 by 2 inches when folded up, and only 0.2 inches thick. Made of aluminum and polypropylene, it weighs just 10 grams, and it easily slips into your bag, your pocket, or even your wallet.

When you need a stand, you just flip up the aluminum backplate, and then flip up the aluminum support piece and insert it into one of nine slots in the backplate to pick your stand angle. You then flip up a small, plastic tab in the front of the stand to hold your device in place. The stand can accommodate an iPhone, iPod touch, or even an iPad mini — though not a full-size iPad — with or without a case. An iPad mini is sturdy in landscape orientation, though it's a bit shaky in portrait.

Given that the stand's hinges are made of polypropylene and require bending whenever you use the stand, I don't know how they'll hold up over time, but they're still solid on my QuikStand after a few months of use.

HandleBand

Most bike/bar mounts for smartphones require you to permanently (or at least semi-permanently) attach mounting hardware to your bike, and most are made for a specific device. Nite Ize's $20 HandleBand Universal Smartphone Bar Mount takes a different approach.

Made mostly of black or translucent-white silicone over a metal internal frame, the HandleBand is designed to be easily installed and removed, and it fits pretty much any smartphone, with or without a case. (It works with bars 0.9 to 2.0 inches in diameter.) To install the mount, you just place the arch of the HandleBand on your handlebar — on the bar itself, or on the stem, in whichever orientation you prefer — and then wrap the silicone strap around the bar and over a clip on the opposite side of the metal frame. Removing the HandleBand is as simple as stretching the strap a bit to release it from the clip. (If you want to install the HandleBand more permanently, there are openings in the mount for securing it with zip ties.)

To mount your phone, you set it on the flat top of the HandleBand, wrap the remainder of the silicone strap over the front of the phone, and secure it to the clip on the other side of the metal frame. Though the strap doesn't look especially sturdy, it's tight and grippy — I never felt as though my phone might come loose and fall out, even when riding my bike over rough city streets. (I didn't test it mountain biking.)

 

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