Product Review – Logitech case+drive

Could this be it? The perfect car kit for the iPhone, or any device for that matter?

The basic premise of the Logitech case+ range is simple. There’s a case for your phone, and there are other bits that attach to it. The basic case+ is a slim soft-touch plastic case in a few different colours that fits the iPhone 5 and 5s. (Read on, even if you don’t have an iPhone 5/5s) There is then a nice brushed metal back on the case, with case+ neatly engraved near one corner. This back panel is made from steel, so as well as the functionality it provides for the case+ system, it also offers good protection to the phone. Inside the case+ is a soft fabric backing piece to protect the rear of your device.

The + bit in the name is because there are then a number of accessories that magnetically attach to the rear of the case.

Case+tilt is a smart-cover style pad with three sections that firmly attaches to the rear of the case and can be used as a stand and as cable management for headphone cables. Neat, but not what I’m reviewing today.

Case+energy is a high-capacity battery pack, similar in concept to the Magnetic Battery Case I reviewed previously, which is also cool, but not the subject of this review.

Case+drive is what I purchased today and the +drive module is a slim and very minimal looking suction cup windscreen mount. Visually it’s a soft-looking grey cone with the pointy end chopped off. The wide end attaches to the windscreen and then the front end hinges upwards to reveal a big yellow handle that you turn once the suction cup is on a smooth surface – once you’ve done this, it’s not coming off again unless you want it to!

The end of the +drive is a smooth, flat surface with a big magnet in it. The process of attaching the case+ to the mount is then to wave your phone somewhere in the general direction of the +drive whereupon it snaps into place and is held very securely. It’s also easy enough to get your phone back off the mount, at no stage does it feel like your phone is being held too tightly and you can’t get it off.

Now, even if you don’t have an iPhone 5 or 5s, don’t despair. If you buy the +drive as a standalone module (I’m not sure if this is the case if you get it in the case+drive bundle), although it says on the rear of the box that it requires the Logitech case+ iPhone case, it actually comes with two self-adhesive metal plates that will attach to just about anything you want to. One of the metal plates is the same brushed silver as the case+ backing plate, the other one is a smooth black finish. Had I known this before buying the case+ and the +drive separately, I may have just gone for the +drive mount on it’s own and stuck the plate to my iPhone.

About the only downside to this system is that the windscreen mount is pretty short. In my car, this isn’t a problem but if you’re in a vehicle where you are further back from the windscreen than I am, it may be harder to reach your phone. There is a circular flat disc with 3M VHB (Very High Bond) adhesive on it that can be stuck to the dashboard if this is the case (and if your dashboard is actually flat, as mine isn’t).

In use, the soft finish of the +drive mount and the strength of the magnets means that the phone doesn’t really move around at all while you’re driving, or while you’re tapping on the screen, which is unlike the Steely car mount I was previously using. I don’t know what the rated weight is for this, but you’d probably be able to hold even a small tablet using one of the included self-adhesive metal plates.

This kit combo isn’t the cheapest on the market, but ultimately you’re paying for quality and it performs very well. If price is an issue, go with the +drive mount on it’s own and stick the metal plate on the back of whatever device or case you’re currently using.

This article was posted by Kai Howells. If you liked this content and have any technical work in the Melbourne area, say hello via my contact form or give me a call on 0419 361 653 - I cover most of the greater Melbourne area and my rates are competitive.

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