Car phone mounts can be a real pain to use. Most mounts on the market use some sort of clamping mechanism to secure your phone. While a clamp can effectively hold your device while driving, it is not a very elegant solution. Access to buttons is often blocked by the arms of the clamps, phones can fall out during sudden stops, changing from landscape to portrait can be a chore, and mounting the phone is often a two-handed operation.
SCOSCHE, a car and phone accessory manufacturer, believes that magnets are the answer to all these annoyances. They have been making magnetic mounts for a long time and just debuted their new line of magnetic mounts, the MagicMount Pro series. The new mounts feature magnets that are 30% stronger than their previous models and interchangeable face plate frames that you can swap to match your car's interior.
The way the MagicMount Pro functions is very simple. The mount attaches to either your dash or your window with a standard jelly ring, clamp-down, suction mount. The mounting plate is connected to a ball socket that can be positioned freely. The suction cup worked well, staying firmly attached to the windshield even after baking in the sun all afternoon.
Hidden just beneath the face of the mount are four, incredibly strong, rare-earth magnets that will hold any ferromagnetic object with surprising strength. Since most phones aren't made of iron, you'll need to attach one of the two included steel mounting plates (one large and one small) to your device using the attached 3M adhesive. You can stick it directly to the surface of your phone, place it on the inside of your case, or stick it to the outside of your case. Once the plate is in place all you have to do is slap your phone on the mount and you are ready to go. Here's a promo video you can watch if you want to see it in action.
I've used one of these mounts for the past two weeks, and I have to say, I'm pretty impressed. Let me sum up what I liked and what my concerns are with the mount.
|Easy to Use||This is the single greatest advantage of the MagicMount. To use the mount you just place your phone on it and go. Easy as that.|
|Strong Hold||In a week of testing my phone didn't fall off a single time. This was remarkable to me because I used the smaller of the two included plates on the back of my 6P, which, as you all know, is a huge phone, and the mount still had no problems holding it firmly in place — even when accelerating quickly and braking hard.|
|Quality Materials||The plastics the mount is made of are solid and strong. Nothing feels flimsy or cheap in the mount's construction.|
|Flexibility||With a small footprint, an adjustable socket joint, and the option to use it on either a dashboard or window, the mount gives the user a lot of flexibility in placement and position.|
|Cord Holder||A small c-shaped bracket on the back of the mount holds your charging cord near the mount so you don't have it dangling off your dash. It's a small thing, but a nice convenience.|
|Mounting Plate||Sticking a metal plate to your phone or case may be a deal breaker for some. Even with a case on (albeit a thin one) I can feel the plate on the back of the phone. With the case off the mounting plate is a bit of an eyesore and covers up half of the word Nexus on my 6P. You can, of course, avoid sticking the plate directly to your phone if you use a protective case.|
|NFC & Wireless Charging Interference||NFC will not work through the metal mount plate. I tested this on my wife's Sony Z3 by placing the plate directly over the NFC logo on the back. No dice. The good news is that the plates can easily be positioned lower on most devices so it does not block NFC communication. I wasn't able to test if the plate interfered with wireless charging, but I suspect that it could also be affected by the presence of the metal plate.|
|Curved Device Incompatibility||If you use a device with a rounded back, like the Moto X Pure, then this mount isn't going to work for you. The plates are rigid and don't conform well to even a slight curve. What's more, the mounting plate needs a flush, complete contact with the mount to maintain a strong hold.|
|Price||$40 is a lot to ask for a car mount, especially when other competitors with similar mounts charge a fourth the price.|
Using The Mount
I'll admit that I wasn't sure how much I would like this system when I volunteered to review it. I wasn't super excited about having to stick a metal plate to my phone and I wasn't convinced that magnets would hold my phone in place as well as the other mounts I own.
My wife and I went to a wedding in Arizona a couple of weeks ago, and thanks to space-available non-rev travel passes, we ended up having to fly into California where we rented a car to drive the rest of the way to Phoenix. I figured 10+ hours of driving in a couple unfamiliar states while relying on the mount to hold my phone as it gave me directions would be a perfect way to test the mount.
When we got to the airport I was given the option to upgrade my rental car to a V8 convertible Mustang for $20 more a day. I, of course, said yes and I drove that car like, well, a rental car the whole weekend. Hot sunlight and a fast car with a crazy driver, man, I really gave this mount a baptism by fire. Well, even with aggressive acceleration, fast braking, and a lot of buffeting from the wind at 75MPH (or maybe a little faster) my phone never fell off the mount the entire weekend. Color me impressed.
It's even more impressive considering my phone is a massive Nexus 6P and the mounting plate I attached to the case was the smaller of the two included plates. I didn't even use the adhesive to stick the plate to my phone, I just plopped it in the middle of the case and put my phone in on top of it. The magnet really is surprisingly strong.
Getting in and out of the car dozens of times over the course of the three day trip I quickly fell in love with the mount. Mounting the phone literally takes a second, and with my charging cord held in place by the c-ring on the back plugging in the phone takes only a couple seconds longer. Sure, it's not a huge time savings over a more traditional mount, but I'm frequently in a hurry when I get in my car and I appreciate anything that can save me a little time.
The best compliment I can give the mount is that about three hours into the road trip I forgot about it entirely. It worked as advertised and didn't annoy me. In fact, it exceeded my expectations. I love it when products do that.
This is a great product that I can wholeheartedly recommend. Sure, there are a couple of small grievances that I mentioned in the not-so-good section above, but all-in-all, this is my new favorite mount and I'll be picking up another one for my wife's car soon. If you want to pick one up for yourself then follow the link at the bottom of the article. There are three different options available on SCOSCHE's site; the dash and vent mounts are both $30 and the combo dash/window mount (the one I was sent for review) is $40.
You can also check out the full collection of SCHOSCHE's original mounts on Amazon. The magnets aren't as strong, and they don't have the interchangeable face plates, but the prices are considerably lower, starting at $15. If you have any questions be sure to ask them in the comments below. I might even answer them.
- SCOSCHE Pro Series