The Nite Ize Steelie Phone Mount
Since we're talking about vehicles and mobility this week, I decided to review one of my absolute favorite vehicle accessories: the Nite Ize Steelie phone mount. If I'm driving you can guarantee my phone is in use. If it's not navigating it's definitely playing music or an awesome podcast like Across the Peak (just kidding - I do listen to other stuff, too!). For years I've done without a mount for my phone because I didn't think I needed one. Until my red-hot, smoking girlfriend bought me a Steelie that is...
You may be asking one of two questions. First, "who cares - you don't really need a mount." I'd say you're wrong there. The most important reason for having a mount is that it puts the phone up on the dash, within your line of sight. This makes it easy to see the phone's screen if you're navigating. Looking down to check the directions, or holding the phone up with one hand both take time and precious mental bandwidth. if you're going to navigate with your phone you should get it up within your sight-line.
Turns out some local laws agree with this. Georgia just passed a new law that says you can't touch your phone at all while driving. That includes "...holding or supporting, with any part of the body..." If you're driving in Georgia, you need a support for your phone.
As a more mundane example, I've had my phone roll off my leg (where I used to stow it) while navigating. This was before I used a mount of course, and I'm sure you can relate. A dropped phone is likely to roll between the seat and center console or fall between your feet. This creates a massive hazard because the tendency is to take your eyes of the road and fish for it. Not to beat a dead horse, but a phone mount will prevent this.
I've resisted phone mounts generally because I haven't found one I really liked. I don't like the big, clunky arms that attach to the dash. In fact, I don't really like anything that is suction-cup based. I also have questioned how most mounts interface with the phone itself. I want something that holds the phone securely, is attractive (at best) and unobtrusive (at least). The Steelie answers all of these requirements. Let's talk about it.
The Nite Ize Steelie
The Nite Ize Steelie is, at its heart, a magnetic ball and socket. The pedestal that mounts to your dash is a large, steel ball. It attaches to your car's dash via very strong adhesive pad. If I were you I would test a few locations for things like viewing angle and proximity to a USB/charging port before committing. If you don't like the standard Steelie mount there are myriad of other options that attach to vents, have longer/taller pedestals, suction-cup arms, and more.
The socket (the part that mounts to your phone) is a strong, circular magnet. The two snap together, hold the phone securely, and allow you to rotate the phone to your preferred viewing angle. This does mean that you have to attach the socket to the back of your phone case. The socket is low profile, so I don't mind. I actually kind of like it - it lets me temporarily attach my phone to any ferrous surface like the refrigerator or the side of my car via the magnet. But what if you change phone cases? I'm glad you asked! The Steelie comes with extra adhesive pads so you can move the socket to a new case if you need to.
The Nite Ize Steelie is also amply supported. This means you can buy extra sockets for your significant other's phone. You can buy extra pedestals to go in all your cars. You can get extra adhesive pads so you can move the Steelie when you switch cars or phone cases. This also lets you share a Steelie set (or two) between your cars like my girlfriend and I do. We can hop in the other's car and still mount our phones with no modifications and without pulling a mount out of our own car.
Like I said at the beginning: I lived for years without a phone mount. Five minutes after owning this thing I wondered, "why?" The Nite Ize Steelie is versatile, compact, and holds your phone securely. It is well support for a variety of applications, inexpensive, and uncomplicated. Simply put it's a badass mount for not a lot of money. If you're in the market for a phone mount, check this one out!
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