All the way from Australia, the folks at NKMOS Design Technology are offering the Ultima smartphone holder. Having used other holders before in my car for my iPhone, I was curious to see how this will work. Will it be easy to use? How steady will it be while driving over very rough road conditions? Let’s find out!
The Ultima from NKMOS is a product first introduced through Kickstarter that uses an all aluminum body and a very large suction cup to attach to the windshield of the car (or to a base you can attach to your dash). Attached to the body is an aluminum clamp that is on a pivot to allows 360 degree rotation of any device held in the clamp.
The clamp is spring-loaded with a single button to press to release one side of the clamp. The holder comes with two different rubber backing pads that you can adhere to the back of the clamp to rest against your device. If you are using a thick protective case, use the thin pad. If you use a slim protective case, go with the thick pad. Simply place the device into the clamp and squeeze the side closed to make a snug fit against the device.
To operate the large suction cup, you simply twist the locking lever to create suction. The holder comes with a cleaning cloth that you would use to clean both the suction pad and the area of glass on the windshield to ensure is stays in place.
Real World Use
At first, I was a little concerned if this holder would stay up attached to the windshield. The solid aluminum construction means that it has some noticeable weight, but I found that the large suction cup had no problem keeping the holder (and my iPhone) in place. The locking lever was a bit stiff to turn to make the suction cup stick to the windshield, but the end result was a very strong and solid connection of the holder to the windshield.
The clamp was very easy to operate. You can insert your iPhone or iPod touch and close the clamp with only one hand. Likewise, a quick press of the release button opens the clamp just enough to allow the device to come free and be removed. To have it work with other devices, you simply hold the button and allow the side of the clamp to slide out farther.
Out on the road, I found this to be exceptionally stable. Thanks to a lack of local government funds, I have the fortune to drive across roads of questionable condition. I drove across rough railroad crossings, roads that are now nothing but a series of patches upon patches, roads with potholes, and the occasional smooth road surface. In all situations, the holder remained stable and steady. I was really impressed that there were no vibrations or shaking of my iPhone while driving over rough roads.
The Ultima is a very rugged and solid in-car universal smartphone holder that will work with all versions of the iPhone and the iPod touch. It is a bit pricey ($99.95), but it’s well worth the cost for something that is very simple to use, looks good, and keeps your device secure and in place.
NKMOS has just launched the next version of their holder—the Ultima S—on Kickstarter. This model will use a sticky pad to hold the device instead of a clamp, allowing support for larger devices, such as an iPad mini. Be sure to check that out to see if you prefer it over the Ultima.
Buy the NKMOS Ultima Smartphone Holder
Provides: In-Car Holder for your iDevice
Developer: NKMOS Design Technology
Minimum Requirements: iPhone (all), iPod touch (all) or similarly sized smartphones