By Jason Snell
December 19, 2022 4:19 PM PT
Belkin’s MagSafe adapter brings Continuity Camera home to the desktop
Earlier this year, Belkin released the Belkin iPhone Mount with MagSafe for Mac Notebooks, a $30 adapter that lets you attach an iPhone to the top of a MacBook screen and use it as a webcam via macOS Ventura’s Continuity Camera feature.
Now there’s the Belkin iPhone Mount with MagSafe for Mac Desktops and Displays, a $40 adapter for other displays. I’ve had a preproduction version for a while now, and took possession of the final shipping version this week. (It seems more or less identical.)
While I like the MacBook adapter with some reservations—which mostly have to do with the weight of an iPhone adjusting your MacBook’s display when you don’t want it to, and it’s hard for Belkin to ignore the laws of physics—I have very few reservations of this new adapter. It works well on my Apple Studio Display but would work just as well on an iMac, a third-party display, or even a television.
The adapter is essentially three separate fold-out pieces (meaning you can fold it down to make it compact for travel or storage purposes): There’s a magnetic puck you attach to your phone, a stand that goes over the top of your display with a lip to keep it attached to the front, and a leg that goes against the back of the display to provide leverage. You can slide the puck forward about halfway if you want to get the phone a little closer to you (and to be sure it’s not picking up the edge of your display).
The leg piece also has a threaded tripod mount, so if you’ve got a tripod handy, you can pretty much attach any MagSafe-compatible iPhone and use it anywhere. It’s a nice alternative to something like Studio Neat’s venerable Glif. You can also tilt the adapter, of course—Belkin says the range is from fully vertical to 25 degrees downward—so you can make sure your shot has just enough, but not too much, headroom.
It’s probably because of the metal magnet required in order to offer MagSafe support, but the whole adapter feels solid, a bit more like a piece of camera equipment than a cheap and fragile computer accessory.
Continuity Camera is a great feature. If you’ve got an iPhone 12, 13, or 14 and need a good webcam, you basically shouldn’t buy one—it’s already in your pocket. While mounting one to the top of a MacBook is a little awkward, there’s no such awkwardness on a larger display. I highly recommend the Belkin iPhone Mount with MagSafe for Mac Desktops and Displays for anyone who wants to put that excellent iPhone camera to use on their Mac.
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