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When I want to use my phone as a GPS I usually try to find spaces in the car to put the phone in a horizontal position. Some possible places are the space right over the middle air condition holes, the tray in the middle (for some cars) of the dashboard, the tray for cups right in front of the transmission lever. The problem is that in every case, if I take a fast turn or run on a road bump, the phone falls or flips.

What (and where) is the best way to keep the phone from falling? I don't mind where the phone is as long as:

  • I can see it while I am driving
  • I can see what is in the screen (the screen is not blocked)
  • The phone will not fall if I go through a road bump or a turn.
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There are some countries that don't allow sticking anything to the windscreen, however, in those that do, the recommended place for a portable satnav is in a holder stuck to the screen, out of your direct line of sight, slightly to the left or right of your steering wheel.

The benefits are two-fold.

  • You don't have to fully avert your gaze from the road to see it.

  • You are less tempted to actually reach to interact with it whilst driving - which is also likely to be illegal.

There's a 3rd potential benefit. Some satnavs will work in 'HUD mode' so you can turn it the other way up & see the display directly reflected in your windscreen.

After comments: Another potential benefit is if you use a dash-cam app, the camera has an unobstructed view of the road ahead.

Cost, from about £/€/$ 1 upwards.
Random example from eBay...

These generally work with a 'sucker' plate & so are easily removed or repositioned. They are not stuck with any adhesive that might become semi-permanent or cause a mess when trying to detach.

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    Another advantage of this mount is that if you use a dashcam app, the phone's camera has an unobstructed forward view. – Zeiss Ikon Apr 25 '17 at 13:01
  • Good point - I hadn't even considered that [as I've never used a dash cam app]. I did have my original satnav stuck to the screen like this for over 10 years, before I switched to a CarPlay system a couple of years ago. – Tetsujin Apr 25 '17 at 13:03
  • I got one of those holders, but replaced the suction cup with some screws into the dashboard. This way I could place the unit closer to me (and not have it obscure part of the windscreen), and I lost a part that tends to fail (the suction cup). – Hobbes Apr 25 '17 at 13:21
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    I was expecting a more DIY solution but I guess these things are cheap and convenient so I'll accept your answer. – papakias Apr 25 '17 at 13:49
  • I've used DIY solutions myself - back before these things were so ubiquitous [I've had satnav since maybe '03]. From bits of painstakingly bent wire hanging out of the air-vents, to one particular rental van I sometimes drive which has a cup-holder of exactly the right position & size that I can use that. I eventually just bought one of these for myself, for the couple of times a year it will come in handy - driving someone else's car, different rental van etc etc - for a pound it doesn't seem worth the effort anymore :) – Tetsujin Apr 25 '17 at 13:57
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Use a couple of rubber bands (in conjunction with a paperclip) to affix to your Air conditioning vents. Phone in Vents with elastic bands

Sorry for poor quality picture. :)

Edit: I don't think I can add comments yet due to minimum rep status, however rubber should be none conductive and after a quick test on a Samsung 7, I can confirm that the elastic bands I have access to do not interfere with the touchscreen. I can not comment about every style of touchscreen though (Ie LG cookie style). This fix can be done without paper clips and just figure of 8 the elastic band to start and finish loop on phone after going through vent.

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    that is a nice DIY solution. Will the bands interfere with the touch screen though? – papakias Apr 28 '17 at 14:43
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    I edited my main answer to inform that the elastic bands I have access to (plain office style) do not interfere with my S7 touchscreen. – TiO May 3 '17 at 9:48
  • Bands won't interfere with a touchscreen as touchscreen needs a conductive surface to interact, like human skin or specially made stylus – DS R May 7 '17 at 14:00
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I've been using this for all my GPS needs. Since its magnetic its easy to take off and put on. Also with my car having bluetooth, I dont really need the CD drive.

https://www.koomus.com/products/magnetic-pro-cd-slot-cradle-less-smartphone-car-mount

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There are commercial brackets that clip onto the louvers in the air conditioning vent. This is also a good spot, because when the air conditioning is running, it'll keep the phone from overheating. I've been using one of these for almost two years -- and they fit a wide variety of phones, so you don't have to get a new one when you upgrade.

  • Also, the air-conditioning vent might be controlled for airflow to prevent over cooling of the phone. – DS R May 7 '17 at 14:01
  • This is a much poorer choice when you are running the heat in cold weather. – arp Apr 26 '18 at 12:01
  • If the weather is cool enough you need the heat, overheating isn't usually a big problem with the phone (though if you try to run a dashcam app and GPS navigator together, you might overheat anyway). – Zeiss Ikon Apr 26 '18 at 12:03

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