Most, if not all states, have laws specifying cell phones must be used hands-free while driving. Most people want to obey they law, but considering how integrated our phones have become in our daily commute, many people struggle with this law. Until car manufacturers begin making vehicles with built-in phone mounts, we are forced to rely on third-party accessory makers.
Satechi wants to help you avoid a traffic ticket with its compact and magnetic vent mount.
The mount is pretty similar to other vent mounts.
It is composed of a thick, circular magnet, with a rubber, four-pronged grip attached. In order to grab onto a variety of vent sizes, the prongs have two different sized spaces between them.
You attach the mount by pushing it onto your vehicle’s air vent.
You can see the mount is pretty tiny, it’s roughly the same size as my vehicle’s radio knobs.
In order for your phone to be held in place by the mount, you need to attach one of two included metal plates to your phone or case.
For some reason, the round plate has a sticky pad on the back, but the rectangular one doesn’t.
After I installed the plate, I placed the phone on the mount.
I was a little nervous about the mount because it was so small, but it held my phone just fine. My drive into work involves several potholed and poorly paved portions of road, but the phone never once fell off the mount.
One of the benefits of using a vent mount is that it shouldn’t block any of your radio controls or view of the road. As you can see, the Satechi mount does neither.
While mounted, the only minor issue I experienced was, I was only able to position my phone horizontally. The portion of the console dividing the vents from the radio extends a bit past the vents; as a result, I was unable to position the phone vertically. A slightly larger mount would have held the phone past that portion of the console, and allowed the phone to be positioned vertically.
After testing the mount, I took my phone and placed it on my wireless charging pad. As I expected, the metal plate prevented the phone from charging wirelessly. This wasn’t much of shock to me, it’s a common issue with magnetic mounts.
The only other issue I found is one common to all vent mounts. If it’s winter and you have the heat on, your phone is going to be bombarded with hot air and will get very hot.
Once, on a particularly cold day, I had my phone attached to the vent mount with my heat blasting. When I got home, I grabbed my phone and was alarmed how hot it was. It can be an issue because performance tends to suffer when phones get hotter.
The Satechi magnetic vent is a very reliable mount. Despite its small size, it’s very powerful. The issue with magnetic charging and excess heat can’t really be held against the mount, they are problems any magnetic vent mount is going to experience.
If you are interested in a magnetic vent mount for under $20, the Satechi mount would be a good choice.