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Speck GrabTab review: Why I prefer this $10 phone grip to PopSockets

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speck grabtabConnie Chen/Business Insider

  • While many of my colleagues and friends love their PopSockets grips, I think they’re overrated. 
  • In my experience, the Speck GrabTab ($9.95) is a better phone grip and stand.
  • It might not come in as many colors or patterns, but it’s more secure, more comfortable to hold, and less obtrusive. 

There are over 40 million PopSockets grips attached to phones around the world. Some of those grips belong to our very own editors, who regularly rave about the affordable phone accessory as one of the most useful things they own

Their usefulness is clear, plus they come in hundreds of different designs (including swappable ones) to suit your personality, but… I still don’t love them. 

The accessory I prefer over PopSockets grips is Speck’s GrabTab ($9.95). 

speck grabtab 3Amazon

Read more: 20 innovative and cool accessories for the new iPhone you got for the holidays

The GrabTab also sticks to the back of your phone and works as a grip and a stand. Instead of a button that pops out, it’s a sliding loop that can be adjusted to your finger size or locked tightly in place. 

Ever since I started using the GrabTab a few months ago, I can’t imagine holding my phone without it. Because the loop is attached to the card-sized, 3 mm-thick backing, there’s no way my phone will fall from my hands, unless my finger comes out of the loop. With PopSockets grips, I sometimes felt like I could drop my phone because there’s nothing to catch the fall if my finger slips. With GrabTab grips, whether the train jolts unexpectedly or I fall asleep with my phone in hand, my phone is safe since I’m almost “wearing” it. 

The sliding design is also conducive to a range of finger sizes and holding positions. You can loop any of your fingers through, or loop more than one finger as well. Personally, I’ve found the most comfortable position (shown in the top image) is putting my middle finger through the loop while my other fingers rest lightly on the back and my phone sits in my palm. 

speck grabtab 2Connie Chen/Business Insider

Read more: I used to think PopSockets Grips were unnecessary — now they’re my favorite iPhone accessory under $10

Despite the fluid flexibility of the grip “mode,” the GrabTab is sturdy and secure as a stand. When you slide the loop all the way to the end, it clicks into place and lets you prop up your phone. I’ve never realized how convenient a stand is when watching videos, but I’ve discovered (likely light years behind the general populace) just how nice it is to keep my hands free as I follow along cooking and workout videos or watch a TV show while eating lunch. 

The GrabTab’s slim construction is supposed to allow for wireless charging, but according to other reviewers, this capability can unfortunately be hit or miss. If you’re looking for a wireless charging-compatible accessory, the GrabTab may not be reliable. However, as a general grip and stand, I’ve found it to be very reliable. It sticks firmly to my phone case and stays there, no matter how hard I try to pry it off, and always feels comfortable and secure in my hand. 

The one area I will say that PopSockets is miles ahead in is the range of color and design options. Though there are a handful of solid colored, striped, and patterned GrabTab styles, they can’t compare to the full rainbow of PopSockets available.

With these flaws in mind, the GrabTab still prevails for me and is where I would spend my $10. 

Shop the GrabTab for $9.95 at Amazon here

Shop the GrabTab for $9.99 at Best Buy here

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Disclosure: This post is brought to you by the Insider Picks team. We highlight products and services you might find interesting. If you buy them, we get a small share of the revenue from the sale from our commerce partners. We frequently receive products free of charge from manufacturers to test. This does not drive our decision as to whether or not a product is featured or recommended. We operate independently from our advertising sales team. We welcome your feedback. Email us at insiderpicks@businessinsider.com.

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