WPCentral Holiday Gift Guide: Automotive Accessories
Happy Holidays everyone! With the holiday's fast approaching, everyone is looking for gift ideas. We thought we would offer a few gift ideas over the next few days.
First up, automobile accessories. These are range from stocking stuffers to items that would make any Windows Phone user a great under-the-tree present. Gift ideas to make the most of your Windows Phone while out and about in your car. To see what we'd recommend, hop on past the break.
Everyone needs a car charger for those times when your Windows Phone needs a little boost to make it through the day. There is a wide assortment of chargers available over at the WPCentral Accessory Store and we would lean towards the Smartphone Experts Micro-USB charger with USB port which will run you just shy of $15. This not only gives you a micro-USB charger for your Windows Phone but also gives you a secondary USB charging port. Other options run about $8 and higher and you can find the full car charger line up here at the WPCentral Accessory Store.
The safest way to use your Windows Phone while driving is hands free. For those who aren't comfortable with a Bluetooth headsets, the best alternative is a Bluetooth Speaker. These speakers slide securely onto your visor to offer a low-profile, hands-free solution. There are several options available that range from about $30 on up in price and vary in features. Here are two options that stand out.
Motorola T-325: The nice thing about the Motorola T-325 is that it automatically turns off and on as you enter/exit the car. No more forgetting about turning off or off the speaker. Call quality is good and the feature set is respectable (audible caller ID, re-dial, mute, multiple device connection, etc.). You can find the Motorola T-325 for about $30 at Amazon.com.
Blueant S4: Blueant has built a reputation for quality Bluetooth accessories and the Blueant S4 speaker (here's our review) doesn't fall short of the mark. With the S4 there is no longer any need to touch your phone or speaker while driving. The S4 is controled by voice commands to answer, end, call, and adjust the settings. The S4 is running $84.95 here at the WPCentral Accessory Store.
With navigation apps such as Garmin Streetpilot, Navigon, and Turn by Turn Navigation your Windows Phone becomes a handy navigational tool. But you can't follow the routes with your Windows Phone in your pocket. Enter the car mount or cradle.
Sure, you could lay your Windows Phone on the dash but that will only last until your first turn then it goes sliding across the car. There's also the "I'll lay it on the passenger seat" method that will likely yield similar results. The safest way to have your Windows Phone viewable while driving is the car mount/cradle.
Two options stand out over at the WPCentral Accessory Store. First you have the the traditional grip/clamp style that holds your Windows Phone in place by cushioned arms. Second, you have the Clingo mounts that use a tacky material to hold your phone in place. The Clingo sticky pad holds your phone securely, yet let's it go when you're ready to exit the car without leaving any residue.
Each style is offered in a variety of mounting options (air vent, window suction cup, double tape mounting pad). The suction cup mount might offer the most versatility. You can find the Clingo suction cup mount here for $27.95 and the iGrip Universal Mount here for $19.95. You can find the full line up of car mounts here at the WPCentral Accessory Store.
These are but a few of the many gift ideas for your automobile that Windows Phone users would enjoy. Feel free to share your gift ideas in the comments section.