A desk stand for the iPhone or iPad is a very useful accessory, particularly for use in conjunction with a Bluetooth keyboard. It’s also ideal for placing the phone at a suitable reading angle when sitting in Starbucks, something I have been known to do on occasion.
A charging stand, such as Belkin’s charge and sync dock is my preferred option when back at base and, in fairness, it is not too heavy to carry around in a bag. But the integral cable is a nuisance unless you need to charge the phone and can find a nearby socket.
So what is out there that would work as an iPhone stand, something simple, inexpensive, light and easy to carry? Surprisingly little, as it turns out. But I did try two devices which are well-featured on Amazon under different names and guises.
I narrowed the choice down to the Acetec Desk Holder Stand Dock Cradle and the VonHaus Folding Stand. The former cost £2.99 and the latter all of £3.99. I wasn’t sure which to go for so I bought both.
Let’s look first at the Acetec (which, as I mentioned and in common with the other stand, is marketed under various names). It is a simple two-piece affair which slots together. The propstand is simply cut from the backrest; you could make it yourself with a single piece of plywood and a jigsaw (although you could hardly do it for less than £2.99). It really doesn’t need much more explanation. It works, just about, and it is definitely easy to carry and store. But I don’t like the two separate pieces, which could easily become misplaced, and it is not the most solid of stands.
The VonHaus is far more serviceable and is definitely my preferred option. I’ve been using it for a month and find that it holds the phone securely, either in landscape or portrait orientation.
It might look like an Apple-designed aluminium construction in the photographs but it is actually made from plastic. It has an adjustable propstand which can be moved to any desired angle one click at a time (pushing the button at the fulcrum releases the ratchet).
The stand is sufficiently large (10m wide, 8.5cm deep) to support the 6 Plus in comfort. The slot at the front of the backrest has a rubberised plastic insert which will accommodate most naked smartphones. However, when a case is fitted (even, as in my case, the narrow Apple silicone back case) there is insufficient room. Instead, the device rests on top of the slot and is quite stable. The only downside is that the collapsed stand has a depth of 3cm which makes it rather bulky for storage in a bag. It weights 70g.
All in all, this is a fine solution to the problem of propping up your phone for reading or when working with a keyboard. At £3.99 it is fairly priced and is recommended. Note that it is not made specifically for the iPhone 6 but the description says it is compatible with the 4 and 5; it certainly works with the 6 and 6 Plus as I have discovered.