IDAPT accessories: Style and substance from Barcelona

park guell   barcelona

IDAPT is a design company in Barcelona, Spain that reflects a lot of the character of the city that's seen in the image above. While some products such as the US$9.99 Sutra channel the quirky and playful side of the architecture of Barcelona, others like the $49.99 Universal Charger i4 are as industrious and flexible as the residents of the city. Today I'm taking a look at three products from the company, all three of which one TUAW reader will win in a giveaway.

Universal Holder Sutra

Normally I'm skeptical of anything advertising itself as "Universal", but in the case of the Universal Holder Sutra, the name seems to be very appropriate. This is a very inexpensive stand that works with your iPhone or iPad to prop it up in a variety of positions. It's lightweight at 1.3 ounces (36.85 grams), and made of bright white plastic with accents available in six different colors (red, blue, gray, green, orange, magenta).

When standing vertically, Sutra props your iPhone or iPad up in either portrait or landscape orientation. For typing on an iPad, simply place the Sutra on its side, put the iPad on top of it, and it's tilted at a slight angle that's perfect for typing.

There's one more trick to the Sutra as well: one side of the case opens up to reveal a "storage trunk" inside which a pair of earphones, a connection cable, or whatever you'd like to keep neatly tucked away can reside.

Smart design, low cost, multiple uses. A very smart little product!

Rating: 4 stars out of 4 stars possible

Four star rating out of four stars possible

IDAPT Universal Charger i4+

We see a lot of charging docks around here, the majority of which are designed to be used with one or maybe two devices of a certain type. For example, you'll get docks that have a 30-pin Dock connector, others that have a Lightning connector, and some that just provide empty USB ports into which you plug cables for a messy-looking charger.

The IDAPT Universal Charger i4+ is indicative of the flexibility that the company builds into its products, as it is compatible with over 5,000 different devices. It does this by offering a variety of tips (some included, some extra) that plug into the base unit. For example, the unit I tested included tips for 30-pin Dock connector, Lightning connector, mini-USB, and two for micro-USB. Three of those tips can be plugged into the base unit at a time, meaning that you could theoretically charge an iPhone in a Mophie Juice Pack case (micro-USB), an iPhone 4S (30-pin Dock connector) and an iPad mini (Lightning connector) simultaneously. Oh, and there's a USB port on the side, so if you happen to have one more device to charge, you're set.

There are are a huge number of other tips available for everything from AA/AAA batteries, the iPod shuffle, a Qi wireless charging module, even Palm devices. Just about anything you want to charge can be connected to this truly universal charger.

The IDAPT Universal Charger i4+ is a 25 W charger, so every tip is getting full power even when you're charging four different devices. Every device charges just as quickly as if you've connected it to the original manufacturer charging adapter.

Design-wise, the i4+ is kind of an inverted truncated pyramid in shape, and comes in a choice of black, white, cyan, magenta, yellow, and green.

At $49.99, this is also a very reasonably-priced product compared to some single port units we've tested in the past. Once again, the low cost, design, and flexibility give this IDAPT product a top score from me.

Rating: 4 stars out of 4 stars possible

Four star rating out of four stars possible

IDAPT Universal Holder HUG Desk

OK, now let's see if we can go for the review trifecta here. The final product I'm looking at is the IDAPT Universal Holder HUG Desk. In comparison to the little IDAPT Sutra, which is designed for portable use, the HUG Desk is designed to take up residence on a desk or table.

When IDAPT says that this is a "universal holder", they mean it. It can hold any smartphone or tablet made today. It gains this flexibility by using an elastic double strap to hold onto two diagonally-opposite corners of your device. That strap is affixed to your device through a micro-suction pad, meaning that you can take it off of one device and slap it onto another without any sticky residue staying behind.

IDAPT also notes that the HUG Desk works with many smartphone and tablet cases, so you don't even have to remove those protective cases to mount your iPhone or iPad on the HUG Desk. That strap, by the way, is held by a heavy steel base outfitted with non-slip materials.

I tried the HUG Desk with two devices; my iPhone 5s in a Mophie Juice Pack Helium case and an iPad Air without a case. Note that while you're attaching the elastic double strap with the micro-suction pad, you'll want to be sure to hold that pad into place as any shearing motion caused by pulling on one of the straps will definitely cause the pad to pop off. The pad is meant to have strong "stickiness" in the vertical direction, holding it into place.

The swivel mechanism on the top of the HUG Desk can be placed into just about any position from vertical to completely horizontal, making it one of the more adjustable iPad/iPhone stands I've ever tested.

And IDAPT did it again with the pricing -- the Universal Holder HUG Desk has a price tag of $29.99, which is much less than many of the competing stands that aren't have as flexible in terms of use with a number of different devices and in a variety of positions. Once again, the company from Barcelona has pleasantly surprised me with another low-cost accessory that can be used a lot of different ways.

Rating: 4 stars out of 4 stars possible

Four star rating out of four stars possible


And now it's time for a TUAW reader to win a package containing all three of these top-rated accessories from IDAPT. Here are the rules for the giveaway:

  • Open to legal US residents of the 50 United States, the District of Columbia and Canada (excluding Quebec) who are 18 and older.

  • To enter, fill out the form below completely and click or tap the Submit button.

  • The entry must be made before July 12, 2014 11:59PM Eastern Daylight Time.

  • You may enter only once.

  • One winner will be selected in a random drawing and will receive three IDAPT accessories (Universal Holder HUG Desk, Universal Holder Sutra, Universal Charger i4+) valued at US$89.97

  • Click Here for complete Official Rules.