With the release of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus it was time to shake up the iPhone car charger landscape a bit. iBolt was first out of the gate with their iPro 2. I got my hands on one and put it through its paces. Now I’ll tell you why you should own one if you have an iPhone with Lightning cable, especially one of the new larger ones.
The iBolt iPro 2 is designed to fit an iPhone 5, 5C, 5S, 6, or 6 Plus. It will not work with the old 30-pin iPhone 4S or older because of the integrated Lightning charge and sync cable. Yes, I did say sync. Most mobile accessories these days tend to have a 12v end. Not only will this allow you to use a double port USB charger, but it also means the iPro2 will work with a stereo with USB ports. This includes stereos with Apple CarPlay. The cable is MFi certified with Apple and I’ve had no issues with it whatsoever. I’ve even used the iBolt as cradle on my desk. Its suction cup will stick to almost anything, whether it be the dash or your windshield or your glass-top desk, and what it doesn’t stick to, there’s an included pad with an adhesive back. It’s incredibly versatile and if that isn’t enough, the cable has an extremely long 2-meter length and built-in cable management. It doesn’t matter where you plug it in, the iPro2 won’t have an issue connecting to it.
Not only does it sync well, but the iPro 2 does what it’s supposed to, hold an iPhone. The mount is adjustable to give the best fit for your iPhone. It’ll fit the 4″ iPhone 5 to the 5.5″ 6 Plus, and more importantly it does them with cases. It’ll fit most cases, including some of the waterproof ones, like from LifeProof. To achieve this, it has a long Lightning connector that’ll fit into the recess caused by the case. If you’re using your iPhone naked, there’s a rubber spacer. It holds the iPhone securely with or without the spacer installed. Using a ball joint, the iPro 2 has a full 360° of motion, but there’s enough friction to keep it in place when you’re not moving it, that’s true even with the heavier iPhones. Lastly, it’s designed to avoid interfering with the camera. That means you’re able to effectively use your iPhone as a Dashcam.
Dock’n Drive Software
Debuting with the iPro2 is iBolt’s Dock’n Drive app. The software has been available on Android for sometime, but it’s now making its way to iOS. Unfortunately, in its initial version, it falls far short of the capabilities of the Android version. The first version of the iOS app will only work in portrait mode while the Android app will also work in landscape. It gives you a digital compass with either your speed or a clock inside of it. You can customize your text in blue, yellow, or green in either English or metric measurements. It also shows the date and temperature.
Dock’n Drive only has 4 functions on iOS right now and they are quick launches for the native Apple apps: phone, contacts, map directions, and music. The Android version on the other hand, has up to 30 functions spread over 5 pages. The news isn’t all bad though when it comes to the app. First, the app is free. Second, think of this app as a bit of a placeholder. iBolt is working toward a better version of the app more inline with its Android offering. I’ll revisit this section when that app is released.
Pricing and Availability
The iBolt iPro 2 retails for $49.99. That’s not cheap, but it’s in line with other iOS and Android docks with similar features. If you spend a lot of time in your car, it might be well worth the money.
From Now until March 31st, iBolt is giving Geek Beat viewers $10 off the iPro 2 on Amazon. Use Discount code geekbe10
The iBolt iPro2 is what an iPhone mount should be. It’s well made and adapts to any Lightning iPhone from the 4″ iPhone 5 to the 5.5″ iPhone 6 Plus, with even some very extreme cases on. It can be windshield or dash mounted and its 360° swivel allows the iPhone quick and easy changing between portrait and landscape modes. It’s also fully MFi capable and with a USB end instead of a charger plug, it can work with car stereos, including ones with CarPlay. It’s $50 from the iBolt website and Amazon, and although the included app isn’t quite ready for primetime, I can’t think of a better car dock for a late model iPhone.