Audiences support AppleInsider and can earn a commission when you shop through our links. These partnerships do not affect our editorial content.
Now that both the iPhone 12 line and the newly released iPhone 13 line support MagSafe, in-car carriers that use this technology have become popular. We took the four most popular ones and subjected them to a shock test to see which of them keep our phones.
When editor Mike Wuerthele experienced a relatively low-speed crash, his iPhone 11 in a MagSafe case was designed to add this feature to an older device. Given this failure, we decided to test this feature on iPhones that have full MagSafe support, with a series of MagSafe adapters on the dashboard that attach to the vent.
For this test, we simulated a low-speed collision to show how securely the mounts magnetically hold our iPhone through bumps, hard stops, and minor bumps.
Our testing setup
We needed two components to run our test.
We had to first create a platform that would hold the car air vents to be able to run down the ramp at controlled speeds. To achieve this, we attached a replacement car vent to two pieces of wood that we mounted on a miniature skateboard. She had to be strong to withstand the expected impacts.
Our ramp is made of sheet metal roofing. Its ridges provided a straight path for our platform so that it would roll down the ramp without turning over the edge or turning too much sideways to the side. It was lifted into the air for a final height of about three feet, giving it an inclination of approximately 16 degrees.
The collision stop was a piece of reinforced plywood. It was placed perpendicular to the ramp and held in place by sand.
Combining all assembly information, including height, ramp length, ramp angle, and platform weight, the approximate value of the final speed at the point of impact can be calculated.
Given the existing settings, the iPhone 13 Pro Max on each of the MagSafe-compatible carriers suddenly stopped at just under 10 miles per hour.
Our iPhone 13 Pro Max was housed in a MagSafe case and had glass screen protectors. We also covered the rough grip of the skateboard with a softer tape.
The four most popular MagSafe-compatible car holders enter our test arena. They all plug into the openings in your vehicle and offer similar magnetic connections.
Belkin’s Vent Mount Pro is the only MagSafe car holder with Apple certification. It uses Apple’s own MagSafe component, unlike others that had to clone their own magnetic attachment point.
The ESR HaloLock car carrier is included in the review. This one below has an extra arm that helps calm the entire bracket, attached to the air vent. It also has a built-in Qi wireless charger to power the phone while driving and working on wireless CarPlay.
The Mophie Snap ventilation bracket was tested, which works not only with MagSafe phones, but also on all phones that use the company’s Snap adapter.
Finally, there’s the latest iOttie Velox ventilation bracket. And this one can charge your phone via a non-removable USB-C cable.
After performing our tests, we found that three of the four were strong on impact. Belkin, ESR and iOttie have refused to release the iPhone 13 Pro Max. We tested each of them multiple times and they always kept our phone mounted.
Only the Mophie Snap carrier allows our iPhone to fly. You can see this in our video above how the blow shook our phone and sent it into the air. It is good that we have applied the case and protection for the screen.
Evaluating these results is another matter. Many variables go in favor of whether these same carriers will last you. It depends on your vents, if the brackets have started to move without frequent use, how strong your impact is, which suitcase (if any) you use and more.
With the same phone, the same aperture, and the same impact, we can conclude that all iOttie, ESR, and Belkin were stronger and supportive.
However, if you look only at everyday use without a collision, all four will work almost identically. In contrast, at high speeds, everyone will surely let your phone fall.
However, these are only relatively low strength magnets.
Where to buy
The vents we tested are available for purchase on Amazon, and prices start at $ 29.99. Buy the iOttie refill holder for $ 49.95, the Belkin MagSafe Vent Mount Pro for $ 31.99 (on sale from $ 39.99), the ESR HaloLock for $ 36.99 and the Mophie Snap Vent Mount for $ 29.99.
Friendly communicator. Music maven. Explorer. Pop culture trailblazer. Social media practitioner.