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15

Windows Phone Accessory Review: Clingo Car Mount [Updated]

Clingo Car Mount

One "must have" accessory for my Windows Phone is a good car cradle or mount.  These mounts come in handy when you need to keep an eye on your Windows Phone (e.g. navigation) without running the risk of the phone sliding across your dash or bouncing off the passenger seat.  The Clingo line of car mounts take on this task from a unique approach.

Most car cradles use tension arms to hold your Windows Phone into place. Clingo uses a sticky pad to hold things in place. The green sticky pad reminds me of green slime that sticks to everything.  The question is whether or not this green sticky pad will hold your Windows Phone in place.

Clingo offers their car mount in three versions. There is the Universal Podium that is more for home or office use, a Universal Hands Free that sticks to the windshield or dash of your car, and Universal Vent Mount that clips on to your car's air vents.  We took the Universal Hands-Free model out for a test drive to see how well Clingo held things into place and handled the open road.

Clingo Hands Free car mount

The Universal Hands-Free model has an adjustable arm that attaches to a rotating mounting pad. The mount attaches to your windshield or provided mounting pad (sticks to your dashboard).  You can raise or lower the arm and it secures in place by a tension screw at the base.  Construction of the Clingo mount was solid but I have to admit the rigid arm took some getting used to after using mounts with flexible arms.

While construction was solid, if Clingo couldn't hold things into place with dependability, the mount is a bust. The green sticky pad is sticky, really sticky, and hold your Windows Phone in place nicely.  At first, I was a little apprehensive and worried that my HTC Titan would bounce of the Clingo sticky pad.  I was pleased to see that the Windows Phone didn't budge a hair.

Clingo with the HTC Titan

Clingo's green sticky pad sticks to the phone strong enough that there's a small fear that you're going to rip the phone apart in the process.  The best way to remove your Windows Phone from the mount is to hold on to the mount pad by one of the "wings" that extend from the side as you pull on the Windows Phone.  This will also help prevent pulling the entire Clingo mount from the windshield.  

As advertised, the Clingo doesn't leave any residue on the phone.  I did see a shadow of a footprint on my phone at times but nothing that didn't quickly fade away.

Clingo Side View

Performance wise, the Clingo did well. It held my HTC Titan in place nicely with very little bounce in the mount.  Every now and then I would hit a bump in the road that would shift the sticky pad mount.  The ball and joint lack any tension screw to keep it in place.  The joint is tight but a few bumps did shift the base a little.  Speaking of the Titan, one advantage with the Clingo is that the side micro-USB port on the Titan isn't obstructed. The clamp styled mount's arms will often block this port.

Clingo Car Mount

While the adhesive hold on the Windows Phone is impressive, it also attracts dust, dirt, and grit. You can wash the sticky pad with water to clean it up a bit. Still, I'm a little concerned that you might scratch up the back of the phone if something coarse got stuck on the pad.  This isn't a deal breaker but something that you might want to monitor should the pad get dirty.  Cleaning it periodically with water would also likely help prevent the sticky pad from drying out and loosing its adhesive quality.

While I have my reservations on the sticky pad, overall the Clingo car mount performed well.  The Clingo mount held the heavy weight Titan in place nicely and handled the bumps of the road equally as nice.  The Clingo Universal Hands-Free model is running $27.95 and the Podium Mount and Vent Mount are running $27.95 and $18.95 respectively. You can find all three at the WPCentral Accessory Store.

Update:  Just to address a couple of issues in the comments section, I tried the Clingo with the Samsung Focus S.  The adhesive on the Clingo's sticky pad is strong enough to pull the battery cover off the Samsung Focus S.  It doesn't pull it off consistently but frequently enough that I imagine it would be a royal pain. 

With regards to the staying power of the sticky pad, Clingo claims the adhesive quality will be retained through 3,300+ uses with proper care.  Clingo recommends washing the sticky pad with warm water and mild soap periodically.  This will take care of the grit and grime, as well as helping the pad retain its adhesive quality.  The pad was tested to be effective in temperatures ranging from -11 degrees to 220 degrees Fahrenheit.  There's no indication of a guarantee and if I here back from Clingo, I'll pass it on.

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Comments

There are 15 comments. Sign in to comment

Nice review, George. Did the company say anything about the longevity of that sticky area? Is this thing covered under a warranty? I live in Arizona and I fear this thing will dry up or bake in the sun.

ajua says:

Exactly what I was thinking about the sticky thing.
Here there weather is too hot and it bakes anything you put on the dasboard or windshield.

emark858 says:

I bought two of these last year, one for my office and one for the car.  The office pad is in great shape but the pad in the car started turning black and leaving residue on the back of my phone.  I live in the SF bay area.

I had the same concern over the past few days with temps dropping below freezing but the mount held firm.  I will reach out to the manufacturer to see if there's any life projections or warranty on the adhesiveness.

MannLou says:

In terms of the adhesivenss, all you need to do is wipe a little water on the sticky area and let it air dry and you'll be back to original stickiness. This thing works like a champ. They have a desktop version too I carry it with me all the time  - great for flights or at the office.
http://www.clingo.com/on-the-go/universal-mobile-stand/
 
 

Phrozty says:

Curious... after having played around w/the Samsung Focus S.. specifically w/that plastic cover on the back... how do you think it would fare?  Based off your comment, "sticks to the phone strong enough that there's a small fear that you're going to rip the phone apart in the process." I'm guessing the focus S's "blister pack" cover would get taken off pretty easily...

I used the Titan for the weight factor but I will see how well the Focus S holds up later this afternoon. 

RonV42 says:

Nice review...I would consider getting something like this for my Focus right now. Funny one would think if you didn't have a bluetooth in your car that clingo would cover the speaker.   Why isn't the store carrying the dash mount?  I am not a big fan of window mounts:
http://www.clingo.com/car-mounts/universal-car-dash-mount/
 
 

MannLou says:

By the way, this thing works well with my Casemate on my Titan. That should say a lot for folks worried about it handling weight.

erichon99 says:

I hvae the air vent Clingo and no problems yet.  Sticks well, but you'll have to clean it (run it under warm water and let it dry) maybe once or twice a month.

jkavanagh58 says:

I tried the desktop version so I could use my Samsung Focus as a night stand alarm clock.  Yes it often times pulls the battery cover but the bigger issue is the only sleep disruption was after just a few hours the phone would fall from the "clingy" substance.  I pitched it and working with other options now because I found this product unsuitable in my case.

venom5150 says:

I have to say,  I have had this for about 5-7 months and the tackyness is not nearly as much as it used to be.  I did like it quite a bit untill by phone started falling off.  I just wish they allowed us to purchase the pads for cheap.

Ankhkare says:

I found something awesome about this on google and I want u to check it out.

this is a great product, and I am very pleased, A tip for keeping the pad clean and protected, use the stick,peel, and repeat cover that came with the clingo to set on the pad when not in use, if you threw it away, any small piece of clear plastic should work ( cut to fit ) . I use the Nokia Lumia 920 without any problems, it is a heavy phone, and if I offset the mount a bit I can even use the phone as a dashcam! I would like to know if you can buy replacement pads, so i can cut a custom cam hole out for this purpose, enjoy your clingo, it is cool

njnbat says:

Hey . I hope you are using the product still . How convenient and safe is this product . Whats your experience after 8 months