The MobiValet is a simple device billed as, "the smart place to park your mobi." It's primarily for use in a car but there's no reason you couldn't affix one to a desk, table, chair, or almost anyplace you need to park your "mobi."
What's a mobi? I think it's short for your, "mobile device," which is to say your iPhone, Blackberry, or other smart phone, or other small mobile device such as an iPod or (dare I say it?), Zune.
Here's what mine, a $39.99 Pebble Brown Leather model, looks like:
And here it is actually installed in my car:
The problem it solves for me is where to stash my iPhone while I drive. I often like to recharge it when I'm driving and I usually like to listen to music or podcasts at the same time. Ergo, my iPhone has cables protruding from both its top and bottom ends. Prior to MobiValet the best I could do was one of those suction cup window mount things, a cup holder, or the passenger seat. The first was ugly and distracting, and I never fully trusted the suction cups to hold the thing to the windshield. The cup holder worked OK, but using it to hold my iPhone made it inconvenient to drink a soda or coffee. And both cup holder and passenger seat subjected my iPhone to sliding around when I turned or stopped.
MobiValet solves all of these issues in a way that's both elegant and convenient. Its construction lets you drop your device into it even if there are cables extending from both ends, as shown here:
And, of course, it works even better if my iPhone isn't plugged in to anything at all.
The design is such that dropping your phone in and snatching it back out are about as easy as can be. It's much easier to get to your device in a MobiValet than in a pants or jacket pocket, suction cup windshield mount, or even a shirt pocket. And MobiValet is far better than a cup holder or a passenger seat at preventing your device from sliding around in a sudden stop or sharp turn.
MobiValet attaches to your console, as shown in the images above, via velcro on a temperature resistant acrylic adhesive that's designed specifically for use in automobiles. Installation was fast and easy. I'm not sure what would happen if I removed it and I don't plan to, but the manufacturer says, "In some cases, there may be a sticky residue after removing the velcro. Please consult with your vehicleís manufacturer or dealer on available console cleaners. Please note we do not make any guarantees, claims, or representation with regard to the use of cleaning chemicals, etc. on your carís interior!"
The only complaint I have with MobiValet is that it seems overpriced at $40 or $50 for a leather model. There is also a black cordura nylon version (see image below) for $24.99, but even that seems a little steep to me.
The Bottom Line
If you don't object to the premium price you'll find MobiValet cleverly designed and truly functional.