Keep your phone safely in sight and secure with a car mount.
Update June 2017: Added the Nite Ize Steelie to the list and added a note about windshield mounts.
When you're on the go, your phone is more than just a tool for keeping in touch. It's your road trip playlist and your GPS, too. For safety's sake, mounting your phone to your dashboard, windshield, or air vents is the best way to keep it in view while keeping your hands on the wheel and your eyes on the road. We've gathered up a list of some excellent options for universal car mounts, and trust us, there's no shortage of choices out there.
Note: Before you consider a windshield mount for your phone, you should make and check that
The car mount from iDoo is one fantastic multitasker. It offers wireless charging for your Qi-enabled phone, or space for a charging cable if you need to plug in.
You have three installation options: dashboard mount, air vent clips, or windshield mount. Take the time to experiment a little with the best sight lines for your phone when you're ready to get set up so you'll know which variation works for you. The cradle arm is completely adjustable, so you can avoid glare, and the frame rotates 360 degrees. No matter where you put it, the mount will be an essential part of your commute.
Affordable Universal Car Mount
This offering from Affordable is as minimalist as they come, and you know what that means: no obstructed view. It's ideal for dashboard or windshield installation.
It's simple to install and remove when you're switching vehicles. Bonus points are also awarded to this mount for living up to the name Affordable. It's also been favorably reviewed for some time now; it won't drop your phone when you're travelling bumpy roads, and potholes won't shake it's grip.
Koomus CD-Eco Car Mount
Remember when you kept stacks of CDs in the backseat so that you'd always have your favorite tunes close by? Well, your phone takes care of the songs these days, but your CD player can still be put to good use. The Koomus mount uses it to hold your phone in a very convenient place.
The low-profile mount is easy to install, and your CD player won't be damaged or even recognize that it's in use. The flexible clamps hold your phone securely with or without its case. You can also rotate your phone 360 degrees for easier viewing.
iOttie Easy One Touch XL Car Mount
iOttie's car mount is available in a few different versions, but we're going to spotlight the XL. The suction cup is tough, and won't budge from your dashboard or windshield. If you favor dashboard mounts, you can choose to add their Sticky Gel Pad for some extra grip, although most users say they don't need it. The windshield mount won't obstruct your view, either.
The XL is an especially solid choice if your phone case adds a little extra bulk, since the cradle is designed to hold larger phones to begin with. Your phone can rotate 360 degrees, and if you need to remove the mount and put it in a different vehicle, a quick rinse and dry of the suction cup makes it good as new again.
New Trent Arcadia Magnetic Mount
For something completely different, check out the mount from New Trent. It holds your phone with a strong magnet, and installs onto your air vents. You don't have to worry about snapping your phone into a cradle, just stick it to the magnetic pad and you're on your way.
The base mount is available in black or blue, and comes with two magnetic plates you can stick to the back of two devices, especially handy if you share your car with other family members. The magnetic plates are thin enough to fit into your phone's case, and strong enough to adhere to the base without having to constantly removing the case every time you get in the car.
WizGear Universal Air Vent Magnetic Mount
Wizgear produces another magnetic car mount we're a fan of.. The magnet is strong on this one, and if you take the mount out of the car, it doubles as a kickstand for your phone. The magnet can be concealed inside most phone cases, so you won't have to constantly remove the case before sticking your phone to the mount.
The air vent clips keep your phone highly visible without obstructing your view. The base swivels your phone into your preferred position and promises to keep it there until you move it, even when going over rougher terrain. It's perfect if you just need to jump in the car and go with your phone at the ready.
Spigen Style Ring
An inexpensive alternative for car mounts is the Style Ring. The mount is a tiny black hook that sticks to your dashboard, and the ring sticks to the back of your phone. If you're not wild about sticking things to your car or device, this may not be the right choice for you, but it's convenient.
The ring that attaches to your phone doubles as a kickstand in both portrait or landscape. It hooks to just about anything, so you might find yourself hanging your phone from a variety of places. Positioning the car mount might take some patience to get it just where you'd like it to stay, but it works well for hands-free calling and accessing music. Your phone snaps into place and swivels 360 degrees. It's the smallest car mount you can find, so if space on your dashboard is at a premium, the Style Ring is a solid option.
Nite Ize Steelie
This is definitely one of the coolest mounts on this list. The Steelie is a two-piece mounting system wherein a circular magnet adheres to the back of your phone, or its case, and a spherical magnetic base adheres to your car's dashboard or console.
Hop in the car, and your phone mounts in a snap. This is about as minimalist as it gets in terms of car mounts. Making sharp turns and hitting potholes? No worries: The magnet is super strong and the magnetic ball moves with your phone to prevent it from falling off.
If you want a mounting system that barely noticeable, the Nite Ize Steelie is your slick solution.
The bottom line
First and foremost, you need to know the details of your local laws, in terms of whether or not you are allowed to mount anything on your windshield. Next, you need to consider how often you'll use a car mount and where in your vehicle it's going to be. Each of these car mounts has distinct advantages all their own, but we think that versatility and durability are the most important qualities to look for.
Which universal car mount are you using these days? Tell us about it in the comments!