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David Fiedler

Phone Cases and Phone Mounts

By March 19, 2012

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If you're like me, you never ride your bike without having your phone with you.  You're either on your way somewhere where you'll need it (like work or school) or else you carry it in case of a mechanical problem, thunderstorm or some other challenge.  Or else you just carry it with you all the time, no matter what, even in places like the shower because we're all 21st century nerds and can't do anything without our electronic tether.

If you're like me, you're also liable to drop your phone at the most inconvenient places and times.  Like going through a busy intersection on a four-lane road about 25 mph on your bike.  Nothing like the feeling of looking back and watching your phone bouncing across the pavement amid the auto traffic.

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Fortunately, there are options to protect your phone in episodes like these, and also to help make it more useful to you overall in your cycling.  Protective cases like the ones made by Element or Otterbox (review here) are a nice option.  We had the opportunity to try out Element's Ion3, which had me from the moment I picked up on its a marketing bent aimed squarely at cyclists. Designed for the iPhone 3, the Element case is constructed of soft silicone rubber "that grips like a new set of track tires." No joke. When's the last time you've read something like that in an ad?  Like its counterpart for the iPhone 4 series, the Element Ion4, (shown in the photo to the left) the corners on the phone case are molded for added protection in case of a crash and complement a durable carbon fiber backplate, and we found this to be an attractive and reasonably-priced (@ approx. $20) product. 

A handlebar mount such as the smart products made by Arkon (like their Slim Grip handlebar mount for smartphones) are sweet option too.  If you've using a mapping tool to find your route and/or devices such as a wireless speedometer/cadence meter/heart rate monitor that tie into your smart phone, this sort of mount will put the display right in front of you so you can monitor results and information in real time.

Do you have a favorite case or handlebar mount? Comment below.

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Comments

March 29, 2012 at 12:33 pm
(1) Ernie says:

I LOVE my Lifeproof case!!! Not only is it shock proof (drops from 6 ft), but it’s also WATERPROOF! So no matter what I’m doing–hiking, snowboarding, mtn. biking, commuting to work on my bike, at the beach–I don’t have to worry about dropping it, water getting in it, sand or dirt getting in it…it’s completely sealed and protected…and I can use it that way–no need to take it out of the case to use it!

Just finished changing into my work clothes after commuting to work on my road bike. Lifeproof has a great mounting bracket (that can also be used to hold my iPhone on a PVC pole for videoing, but that’s another story) on my handlebar so I can listen to Pandora while biking. Since it’s waterproof, if water or rain gets on it, no problem.

When mountain biking, I have it in this front pouch for easy and quick access. It’ll sometimes be covered in sweat after a ride–all I have to do is run it under the faucet and rinse it off!

Sure, it costs 4x that of most other cases (MSRP $79) but it’s well worth it for the PEACE OF MIND that short of running over it with my car, it will be fully protected, even if it takes a dive into the toilet!

Plus, it’s much slimmer and has the same tacky rubber (without hanging on to lint and dirt) that the others do. Can you say all this about the Otterbox??? Nope!!!

Lifeproof does what it name says–protects your iPhone from life’s threats!!! (Sorry, only for iPhone).

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