I love the SETA Smartphone Stand. It’s a very smart, very simple product that holds a smartphone steady. It’s not the perfect dock, but it provides the stability to fit on any desk. The Bluelounge Milo is cut of the same cloth; a metal slab with two micro suction panels to provide stability for a smartphone on a desk. And it works very well for just $15.
The Milo is a tiny, nondescript stand. Aside from the choice of white or black and a plastic versus aluminum finish, the Milo is as simple as smartphone docking gets: find a place to keep your phone, stick the Milo to it, and stick your phone to the Milo. The Milo is very small, which is why it’s really intended for iOS devices (iPods and iPhones), though I’ve tested it with larger phones like the Nexus 4 and Galaxy Note 2 and both stay put just fine. It doesn’t appear that they will, but micro suction is not a technology to take lightly. When clean, it won’t give way easily for anything.
That said, the Milo fulfills two of the three requirements for docks that I stated back when I reviewed the SETA:
- It must be stable (user must be able to press on it without the stand or phone moving)
- It must hold the phone at the proper angle (either perfectly vertically or horizontally)
- It should have a simple way to plug in
The Milo gets points one and two, though the angle doesn’t compare to Bluelounge’s Saidoka I wrote about yesterday. However, the challenge with the Milo is that unless you put the phone on sideways, it’s impossible to plug your phone in while connected. There just isn’t room. The stand itself isn’t built for that in the first place; it’s built for positioning a phone for watching movies, keeping a running clock, or anything where you need to see it without touching it. That’s fine, but if you also need to charge it, the Milo won’t help.
Then there’s the biggest comparison of all, the SETA versus the Milo. Both are almost identical, though the Milo is far smaller and is not built for cabling. It’s also much cheaper for the plastic model, though the aluminum one is the same $30 as the SETA, and it doesn’t come in nearly as many colors.
My recommendation for buyers is to decide based on their usage. If you want an upright stand for the office, get the SETA. If you want something simpler and smaller for, say, listening to music while in the kitchen or at a desk at home that you’ll sometimes use, the Milo is a simpler, better fit. It isn’t better, but it gets the job done efficiently, effectively, and inexpensively. Heck, it makes sense to buy a bunch of the plastic model for every room in the house.
Bottom Line: The Milo is an excellent smartphone stand that’s inexpensive. It’s great for home use, though for longer-term or office use, stick with the SETA or a dock.