With the release of $1,000 phones like the Samsung Note 20 and iPhone 12 Pro Max becoming “the norm,” it makes more sense than ever to get a better grip with accessories like PopSockets and Ring Holders. With the 3 main options of phone holders (PopSockets, Love Handles, & Ring Holders), it’s hard to pick the best because they each have their own unique benefits and drawbacks. It all depends on how you use your phone or tablet, so hopefully, we can help give you a “better grip” on your choices.
I know what you’re first question is, so let’s get it out of the way.
“Do any of them work with wireless chargers?”
The simple answer is no, BUT with thinner cases and a good wireless charger, it’s possible. That’s beyond the scope of this article, especially since technology like Energous’s WattUp Wireless Chargers are right around the corner. We’ll be charging our phones like we connect to Wifi, in no time.
Getting back to phone holders, the first option up is…
We start with the most popular option, and for good reason. PopSockets have taken off like wildfire and you can tell why by our weak list of “Cons.” Simply put, they do what they’re supposed to do. Nothing more and nothing less. Just make sure you get the real thing because with popularity comes copy-cats.
If it doesn’t say “PopSockets.com” on the base plate, that’s your best sign that you purchased an inferior knock-off and you should return it from where you got it from right away. “Fugazy” PopSockets suffer from 3 main issues:
- An inferior adhesive that sticks too much and leaves a residue on your phone or case, or they don’t even stick enough to pick up your phone off of the table. knockoffs usually come with a 3M sticker that covers the adhesive part.
- The brittle base-plates crack easily and make the “FakeSocket” unusable.
- They have an inferior pull-and-collapse mechanism that leaves it loose and too limp when extended. (If you’re done chuckling we can move on.)
- PopSockets-compatible wirless chargers now available!!!
- Premium reusable and washable adhesive. If the sticky surface loses sticky strength just dip in water, let dry, and reapply.
- Doubles as a kickstand for hands-free viewing and is the best stand option of the 3.
- Huge selection of styles and colors.
- Compatible mounts for car vents, dashboards, and other flat surfaces.
- Durability. The weakest part is where the head connects to the base and can detach, but it’s pretty easy to snap back into place.
- 360° grip angle.
- Adhesive works best on glass-backed phones and hardcover cases, but oily silicone and other waterproof surfaces can have a hard time sticking. (Clean application area with alcohol wipes for best results)
- Not as comfortable for larger hands. The plastic tabs from the head of the PopSockets are the main issue.
- It takes two fingers to secure phone
A minnie version of Otterbox’s Utility Series Tablet Latch, LoveHandles are just as effective at securing your smaller mobile devices. You can use them on smaller tablets, but they really make the most sense on phones. Comfortable, durable, and slim are the best things about the LoveHandles.
- Ultra-slim design. Very pocket-friendly and less likely to catch on items in your pocket or purse.
- Fair selection of colors and styles.
- Super-comfortable elastic sling grip.
- 1 or 2-finger usage (3 if your hands are small enough)
- Best durability. Not many moving parts like PopSockets and Finger Ring Holders.
- 360° rotating mounts available
3. Finger Ring Holders
Thickness: 4mm (phonetag brand) (varies widely by brand and style)
Formally, it was known as the name for trying to get a hold of someone over the phone. Nowadays, phonetag is the name for trying to get a hold of your phone. This premium phone holder and kickstand combo is one of the latest and greatest ways to secure your phone.
The minimalistic, rounded design is the perfect look for girls or guys, and has a similar look to iPhones and Apple Watches. Even though the ring holder comes in handy, the kickstand is the best function of the two. Compared to traditional ring phone holders, the phonetag’s longer tag-style design makes the kickstand feature far more effective than any other we’ve tested. Also, depending on where you place the phonetag, you’ll be able to use the kickstand in landscape AND portrait mode at a wide range of viewing angles.
Finger ring holders, as a whole, come in the most shapes and sizes. If you’re looking to “dress up” your phone, then this is the style for you. This style features everything from 3D superhero symbols to blinged out hearts. There’s something for everybody!
- Super slim profile on flush-folding design styles like the one pictured above.
- Magnetic car mount compatibility.
- Huge selection of styles and shapes. Also, there are many cases available with built-in finger ring holders. (Best to use with wireless chargers.)
- Durability. Like phonetags, most have a metal finish, a pressure fitted ring connection, and smooth rotation.
- The most secure anti-theft option of the 3, especially from the infamous “crowd grab” and “subway closing-door grab.”
- 360° rotating ring-grip.
- Your phone can be held with one finger or hung easily from hooks and other mounts.
- Adhesives on most brands aren’t as forgiving as the special PopSockets adhesive. (Most come with extra adhesive pads for reapplication.)
- 360° spinning and/or 180° ring-pivot can wear out leaving the kickstand function unusable
- Not-so-slim designs on “door-knocker” style finger ring holders.
- Easily scratched because of the metal and/or paint finish .
- While the magnetic mounts are a nice and easy way to mount, your phone can easily fall with a slight bump. They’re not as strong as traditional magnetic mounts with larger plate and mount heads.
WILDCARD: The StickyWallet
The StickyWallet made our Wildcard slot because it’s much more than a phone holder. The 4-In-1 phone attachment is perfect for packing light. It’s available in 20+ colors and you get your choice of ring holder or finger strap (Love Handle style).
The wallet function features a card slot that fits your ID and a few of your favorite payment options. Don’t worry about losing them because the Spandex construction keeps them snug in place. On top of that, there’s a hidden pocket on the front with a fold-over top flap to keep cash and keys secure. This makes it a perfect accessory for joggers and walkers.
The ring holder function is dual-use. Not only do you get a secure way to hold your phone, but you can also flip the ring out and use it as a kickstand for hands-free viewing. If you go with the strap version, you don’t get the kickstand feature. On the other hand, the strap version is slimmer and a little more comfortable to use as a phone holder.
One of the hidden benefits of the StickyWallet is the metal plate. Whether you choose the ring or strap version, they’re all compatible with all magnetic car phone holders. Here’s a list of the main pros and cons of The StickyWallet:
- Spandex construction is secure, comfortable, and easy to clean
- Ring hinge is loose enough for easy folding and 360° rotation, yet tight enough to keep your phone propped up in kickstand mode (ring version only)
- Hidden front pocket for cash, keys, and more
- Flexible card slot for a snug fit whether you have one or more cards inserted
- Hidden metal plate is compatible with all magnetic phone holders
- 20+ colors and patterns to match any style
- StickyWallet Strap version is only compatible with right-hand usage because of its angle
- Only sticks to certain phone case surfaces (can be fixed with super glue)