Thursday, May 23, 2013

HTC Car Kit for HTC One short review


To be completely honest, I'm not a fan of original phone accessories. They are very expensive and this high price is very often overrated. But this time I made an exception and bought original HTC car holder. And I do not regret that decision.

Typical car holder from "nobody knows where this company comes from" costs from $10 to $30, while HTC Car Kit is available for about $50 - $70. This is 3-7 times more expensive, but I believe this is well spent money. Let me explain why.

  • Mounting
HTC Car Kit can be mounted in two ways. You can fasten in to the front window of your car, or you can use additional adhesive disk, that comes in the box and attach it on your dashboard. Normally you can't attach regular and cheap car kit on your dashboard because of rough surface of the dashboard. This is a very nice solution, giving you opportunity to choose whether you want your Car Kit to be attached to the window, or to the dashboard without covering up your view. Also, it's very easy to mount the entire Car Kit and there is no risk of breaking anything.

  • Build quality
It's just perfect. This is one of the biggest positive aspects of having original accessories. There are no crack sounds, the used plastic is very solid and it looks aesthetic. The swivel neck is made of aluminium and you can rotate is in every direction. There are also no plastic hooks you can break accidentally. The resistance of the aluminium neck is very good. The cradle holds the device securely and firmly, so you don't need to be afraid that your device will fall out, unlike with the cheaper solutions I had in the past. However, without the cable attached in the cradle the device looses its stability (because nothing "holds" it inside the cradle) and can fall out. It is a problem, since not every driver want to drive with a cable attached all the time.

  • Features
HTC devices comes with preloaded software you can run while driving in the car. With HTC Car Kit this application can be launched automatically every time you connect your device to the holder. It's nothing unique in the cradle itself, but it is the attached USB cable that does the trick. The micro USB part has a special terminal with a clips. Once your HTC One will detect it, HTC Car mode application will be launched. However, this feature can be of course turned off in settings. You can't have this feature working correctly with non-HTC Car Kit.

  • Equipment
Like every other original HTC accessory, the HTC Car Kit comes in a very nice box, where you can find the holder itself (made of plastic cradle, aluminium neck and plastic base with wheel and suction pad tab), micro-USB cable with a special terminal, adhesive disk, very nice looking car charger and short, multi-language user guide. The cable is very long, which I find as a drawback, because it has 2m, while 1m should be perfectly enough. Probably I will have to bind the cable and it won't look very cool. Replacing it with a shorter cable is not an option because of missing terminal in regular micro-USB cables.


  • General conclusion
HTC Car Kit is worth its price. It looks way better then any regular car holder and I can surely say it is a premium product for a premium device, just like HTC One is. It's easy to use, easy to clean and it gives you additional control over your device with HTC Car mode application. Also, you can mount it however you like - on the window or on the dashboard. If you own HTC One and you are a car driver, I strongly recommend you buying this Car Kit.

+ build quality
+ design
+ alternative mounting methods
+ HTC device detection
+ comes together with micro-USB cable and car charger
+ swivel neck adjustable in every direction

- price (it is worth the price, but for some it sill might be too much)
- too long micro-USB cable (should be 1m instead of 2m)
- the device isn't secured well if the cable is not attached to the cradle

Have any questions or comments? Feel free to share! Also, if you like this article, please use media sharing buttons (Twitter, G+, Facebook) down this post!

  • Gallery






21 comments:

  1. Looks great!
    I need to buy not only the carholder but also a One :)
    Still happy with my hox and your rom so no hurry.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. HTC One X is still a great device :)

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  2. Indeed.. Love HOX..but One is also great phone.. I don't know which ONE should I use now.. =)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. HTC One has amazing screen and I prefer Sense 5 over Sense 4+ so it's easy decision ;)

      Delete
  3. Mike, if your 12V plug is closer to the back seats than to the dashboard, a 1m-cable will end up with the dock on your knees rather than on the dashboard!
    You know, family car, kids, PSP... ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree, but in most cases 2m would be too long.

      I guess that some mechanism to regulate cable length would be good solution. Just like portable pc mouses has http://www.tmsupplies.net/464374362.jpg

      Delete
  4. I assume this won't take a One wearing a TPU case?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nope, it's for "naked" device only :)

      Delete
  5. Hello, I appreciate your blog. I had the phone since launch and absolutely love it, and that's coming from a GS3. I noticed a problem last night though, after charging to 100%, I turned the off and this morning the battery was down to 90%. The fastboot is switched off. Any ideas why this may be? thanks~ Melisa

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  6. How would it work if placed in the portrait position and attached to the windscreen?

    ReplyDelete
  7. Excellent review.... I would get this, swallowing the cost, but I like to use a case and don't want to go through the routing of taking it on and off. FYI, I am using an app to turn on car mode. Car mode is great.

    Someone should sell the special USB cable....

    ReplyDelete
  8. Cheers for the great honest review Mike, always trusted - Ive been toying with buying a new car kit because my 'Modded' holder .... well doesnt hold very well. Youve possibly sold the HTC Car Kit to me lol (sure you dont work for HTC hahahha)

    Dayze0 (XdaDevelopers)

    Cheers Bud

    ReplyDelete
  9. will this still work if I have a case on?

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  10. Great rewiev thanks Mike but i believe its waste of money

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  11. Thanks Mike, great pros & cons view point & research.
    @ cihan carmaker, what makes you feel that it is a waste of money?

    ReplyDelete
  12. Hi guys. I have this phone and charger, but i shoild point out that remote blutooth actions are not supported. I. E i can not get the phone to make calls when i press my bluetooth button. The phone sarts the process but just freezes. In effect the car mode is not hannds free as you have to touch the phone. Also the charger cbale has to be connected or the phone will fall out in landscape mode. The latter i can live with, but the former is unforgivable. Htc need to sort this out.

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  13. Can anyone please provide more detail about what causes the device to recognise the dock and activate car mode?

    Is there something special about the pinout that causes car mode to activate?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The USB micro end of the cable is a slightly shape. The phone detects the unique connection and triggers the dock mode.

      Delete
  14. Valuable information and excellent design you got here! I would like to thank you for sharing your thoughts into the stuff you post!!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Is it possible to disable the automatic switch to Car Mode on an unreported HTC One (ATT)? I did find an entry for the Car Mode home screen in the apps list. The "disable" option, however, is greyed out. Is there a simple app that will make the phone recognize the car dock as a normal USB connection?

    ReplyDelete