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The Best PopSockets of 2020

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Real TBRN winner

Credit: Betsey Goldwasser / Reviewed

In terms of affordability, versatility, and convenience, the PopSockets PopGrip: Swappable Grip is easily our favorite.

PopSockets PopMount: Multi-Surface

Credit: PopSockets

The PopSockets PopMount: Multi-Surface works on a variety of surfaces, but we especially love it for the car.

How We Tested

The Tester

I’m Shayna Murphy, a senior staff writer here at Reviewed. I’m also a lifelong klutz and I’ve dropped my phone more times than I can count, resulting in countless jokes and some pretty hefty repair bills over the years. Because I also have carpal tunnel syndrome in my right wrist—and that’s my dominant hand—I’m sensitive and perhaps more susceptible to aches and pains when I hold my phone and scroll for extended periods of time than most. I used my first PopSocket about a year ago and immediately noticed a difference in how easy it felt to use and hold onto my phone. To get a sense of how others felt about them (and since I was already sold on them going into these tests), I also recruited a team of in-office testers, none of whom had used PopSockets before.

The Tests

To find the best PopSockets, I tracked down the most popular models on the market and asked our team of in-office testers to start with the most straightforward test of them all: they stuck them onto their phones and simply started using them.

While some testers quickly decided that PopSockets weren’t for them—among those who didn’t like PopSockets, the common complaint was that they just didn’t care for the feel of them between their fingers—the majority of testers enjoyed them and we collectively looked at how easy these models were to install, remove, and reuse, as well as how much extra weight and bulk they added to phones overall. Additionally, we looked at how resilient they were with continuous daily use.

For models with removable tops, we looked at how easy it was to take off existing ones and add new tops. Because I had experience with PopSockets PopGrips before, I spent the bulk of my testing period examining models that I hadn’t used before, specifically the PopWallet+, PopThirst, and Slide units.

During our testing period, which lasted for approximately three weeks, we looked at two different types of mounts—both of which were exclusively designed to work with PopSockets—and a recently released charger, to determine just how compatible these products actually were with the phone grips themselves.

Lastly, since we were curious about how much weight a single PopSocket could support, our lab tested two different PopSocket PopGrips—one brand new, the other gently used—by hanging bags of sand from each and sticking the adhesive side to the underside of a table, in order to determine how much weight each could hold before falling off.

What Are PopSockets?

what is popsockets

Credit: Betsey Goldwasser / Reviewed

PopSockets make it easier to watch videos from your phone.

Made with a circular plastic base, accordion-style stem, and decorative disc top, these expandable grips look just like a knob and stick to the back of your phone the same way a sticker would and “pop” out, so they function as a stand, too.

Since their release in 2014, they’ve risen to near cult-like status, which is no surprise, given that these grips aren’t just super-cute accessories—they also help make everyday things like scrolling, texting, watching videos, and taking selfies from a phone or tablet more comfortable than before.

How Much Weight Can PopSockets Really Hold?

popsockets hanging

Credit: Jonathan Chan / Reviewed

To test how much weight PopSockets can hold, we tested them attached to bags of sand.

In the lab, our testers put bags of sand on two different PopSocket PopGrips, one of which had never been used before and one that had been previously used. We fixed the adhesive side to a wooden table that was coated with plastic. In our findings, the brand new PopSocket was able to hold three pounds of sand overnight. Conversely, the used PopSocket—which our lab determined had 10% less adhesive on it than the brand new one—was only able to hold two pounds of sand for 45 minutes before falling to the ground.

Are PopSockets Actually Reusable?

reusable popsockets

Credit: Jonathan Chan / Reviewed

PopSockets are completely reusable—you just have to know what to do.

Although our lab was unable to determine the exact type of adhesive used with PopSockets—some speculated that it may be similar to a modified acrylic adhesive that historically works best with plastic and doesn’t fare so well with silicone, where it may cause discoloration—we were able to confirm one very important detail about PopSockets: they’re completely reusable.

To test reusability, our lab peeled a freshly applied PopSocket off, then moved it into a different location. They noticed that you can do this up to 4 times before there seems to be any overall degradation in the grip itself. Even then, our lab speculated that it was more likely due to the plastic base bending out of place than the adhesive itself losing any stickiness.

However, some PopSockets seem to contain less adhesive. Of the four PopSockets we tested in the lab, some had about 10% less adhesive, which impacted their overall performance. We couldn’t determine whether this was connected to the price, model, or design, but it was notable, especially during our weight tests.

When it came to reusing PopSockets, we found that you can “revitalize them” by dipping the base into warm water, then using a microfiber cloth to clean off dirt and any other lingering debris. For PopSockets that were extremely dried out—I volunteered one of my own old PopSockets, which had been sitting on my desk for several months—this method didn’t completely restore them good as new, this could make them fine for reuse again, at least until you’re ready to buy a new one.


Other PopSockets We Tested

PopSocket Gif

Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

baby yoda

Credit: Shayna Murphy / Reviewed

We’re obsessed with Baby Yoda—and this PopSocket just makes it even better.

PopGrip Lips

Credit: Betsey Goldwasser / Reviewed

With its cute design and handy size, PopGrip Lips took us pleasantly by surprise.

popcharger

Credit: Betsey Goldwasser / Reviewed

We wanted to love the PopSockets PopPower, but we just couldn’t get behind it.

popwallet

Credit: Betsey Goldwasser / Reviewed

The PopWallet+ seems like a great idea, but we found it to be less spectacular than other options out there.

Checking our work.

We use standardized and scientific testing methods to scrutinize every product and provide you with objectively accurate results. If you’ve found different results in your own research, email us and we’ll compare notes. If it looks substantial, we’ll gladly re-test a product to try and reproduce these results. After all, peer reviews are a critical part of any scientific process.

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U.S. Supreme Court rejects Apple appeal in patent fight with VirnetX

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FILE PHOTO: The Apple logo is shown atop an Apple store at a shopping mall in La Jolla, California, U.S., December 17, 2019, 2019. REUTERS/Mike Blake/File Photo

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday refused to hear Apple Inc’s bid to avoid paying about $440 million in damages for using patent licensing firm VirnetX Inc’s internet security technology without permission in features such as FaceTime video calling.

The justices rejected Apple’s appeal in the long-running case in which a federal jury in 2016 found that Apple had infringed VirnetX’s patents and awarded $302 million. A judge later increased that amount to $439.7 million including interest and other costs.

The case dates back to 2010 when Nevada-based VirnetX filed suit in federal court in the Eastern District of Texas accusing Cupertino, California-based Apple of infringing four patents for secure networks, known as virtual private networks, and secure communications links. VirnetX said Apple infringed with its FaceTime and VPN on Demand features in products such as the iPhone and iPad.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in Washington, which specializes in patent disputes, upheld the judgment against Apple last year.

During the litigation, Apple and other companies requested that a tribunal of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office review the validity of the VirnetX patents. The tribunal canceled key parts of the patents at issue in the case.

But in separate decisions also issued last year, the Federal Circuit set aside certain of the tribunal’s rulings, bringing VirnetX closer to collecting damages from Apple. Apple appealed to the Supreme Court, contending that the damages should be recalculated because the specific patents VirnetX accused it of infringing with FaceTime were nearly wiped out.

Apple in a court filing called the Federal Circuit’s refusal to entertain its demands “legally wrong and grossly unfair.” The company also said the lower courts impermissibly allowed VirnetX to request damages far beyond the value of the patented invention.

VirnetX told the justices: “The entire damages award … remains supported by claims that a jury – and the Federal Circuit – found valid years ago and that have not been canceled since.”

Reporting by Andrew Chung; Editing by Will Dunham

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.



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5 amazing products at their lowest prices

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— Recommendations are independently chosen by Reviewed’s editors. Purchases you make through our links may earn us a commission.

Happy Monday! In my humble opinion, there’s no better way to start the week than hunting down a good deal. Not only can you get something you’ve been eyeing for a while at an incredible price, but there’s also a little excitement knowing a package will be arriving for you sometime during the week. Today’s deals are particularly exciting because you can find some of our top-tested products at their lowest prices including robot vacuums, Lodge cast iron skillets, and Roku streaming sticks. Check out all the ways you can save today.

Love a good deal?: Sign up for our weekly deals newsletter. It’s free and you can unsubscribe any time.

1. Lowest price: The best affordable robot vacuum on the market

2020 is the year I’ve decided to become a little more cleaner and organized, but being as busy as I am, the cleaning part—specifically vacuuming enough—has been left in the dust. But with a nifty robot vacuum, I could get it to do my dirty work for me before I can do a weekly (err, monthly) deep clean. Plus, you don’t even have to spend too much to get a great one. Right now, you can get our favorite affordable robot vacuum for $70 off in the color white, which is also the lowest price we’ve seen since the holidays. We love the Eufy RoboVac 11S for its great cleaning power and reasonable price, which is even more reasonable thanks to this deal.

Get the Eufy BoostIQ RoboVac 11S for $159.99 (Save $70)

2. Under $10: Our favorite cast iron skillet

Cast iron pans are a game-changer in the kitchen. Not only can you use them on the stovetop but they can also go in the oven or on the grill, making them a versatile piece of cookware. Lodge makes the best cast iron cookware, and right now you can get this popular 8-inch skillet for just $8 and the lowest price we’ve ever seen. It’s an ideal size for baking smaller desserts or cooking a meal for one.

Get the Lodge Cast Iron 8-Inch Skillet for $7.99 (Save $2)

3. $20 off: The best affordable streaming stick

During the colder seasons, there’s nothing I want to do more than binge-watch Disney+ or Netflix and avoid going outside. For the best binge-watching experience, you’re going to want a good streaming stick to watch it on the small screen as opposed to your laptop. The Roku Streaming Stick+ is the best affordable media streaming device we’ve ever tested. It offers 4K or HDR content and has an amazing interface, which means it’s probably better than the streaming interface your Smart TV currently has Right now, you can get it for $20 off, which is its second lowest price.

Get the Roku Streaming Stick+ for $39 (Save $20.99)

4. 25% off: The best packing cubes for traveling

The most stressful part about any trip is packing. You need to figure out how you’re going to fit everything in your suitcase, and how you’re going to find what you’re looking for without making a mess once you’ve reached your destination. That’s where packing cubes come in and this set from eBags is the best one we’ve ever tested. Right now, you can get the three-piece set 20% off and the six-piece set for 25% off if you clip the on-page coupon, which is the lowest price we’ve ever seen for either. If you have any big trips planned for 2020, this deal is for you.

  • Get the eBags Three-Piece Packing Cube Value Set for $23.99 (Save $6)
  • Get the eBags Six-Piece Packing Cube Value Set for $33.74 (Save $11.25)

5. Lowest price: Our favorite classic rolling pin for baking and more

I love baking cooking, pizza making, and the like, but for some reason, I still don’t own a proper rolling pin—and let me tell you, a wine bottle just doesn’t cut it. But now is the time to finally get one because the best classic rolling pin we’ve ever tested is down to its lowest price of just $8. We love how comfortable the pin felt in our hands (read: no hand cramps) and that it was seamless to achieve the desired thickness of the dough. It’s honestly the perfect pin for any kitchen, especially at this price.

Get the Farberware Classic Wood Rolling Pin for $7.99 (Save $10) 

The product experts at Reviewed have all your shopping needs covered. Follow Reviewed on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for the latest deals, reviews, and more.

Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.



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Is There A Dangerous Link Between Corona Virus & 5G Technology? with Ole Dammegard & Special Guests

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News reports from China indicate the Corona virus is impacting virtually everything including the much debated 5G roll out, but is there a deeper connection between the feared outbreak and the controversial next generation tech?

Ole and I are joined EMF technology expert Olle Johansson and military technology expert Cody Snodgres.

Don’t miss today’s episode of Light On Conspiracies with Ole Dammeagard on SubscribeStar and Patreon

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