Life hack: Tablet stand from $2 office item

Mobile gadgets seem to multiply like rabbits. If you're like me, you may already have several. This simple life hack will keep your tablet or smartphone at the ready. There's another bonus hack, too.

Tablet stand hack side
Image: James Kendrick/ZDNet

Chances are you own a tablet, if sales numbers are an indication. That means you need accessories, including a good way to keep the tablet on the desk in the home or office. A simple product you may already have — only $2 if not — will keep that tablet off the desk and ready to use.

Simple solutions are always the best, and this one certainly qualifies. A good tablet stand will keep the slate propped up for use, yet take little valuable desk space. There are lots of stands available to purchase, from the inexpensive to the obscenely high-priced.

There's a chance you may already have a really good tablet stand, although you aren't using it for that purpose as it's designed for something else. Even if you don't have one, you can get one of these gizmos for just $2 at the local chain office supply store.

The black wire mesh business card holder (image below) is a simple item that is perfect for proudly displaying cards. That's not the only role it can fill for mobile device owners.

Tablet stand hack
Image: James Kendrick/ZDNet

For over six years I have been using a wire mesh business card holder as a stand for my smartphones (back in the day) and now with the various tablets I own. It's available online for as little as $1.99, and it's a superb stand for most tablets.

I've used it with tablets as small as 7 inches, and as large as the iPad. The tablet sits securely in the base and the lip of the card holder keeps it at the perfect viewing angle for using the slate in the stand.

Tablet stand hack front
Image: James Kendrick/ZDNet

It works just as well for smartphones. If you want your phone in the stand in the standard portrait orientation, put it in the card holder stand upside down. You can have the phone plugged in if the jack is on the bottom edge.

The card holder looks right at home in both the home office and the cubicle at work. It's so cheap you can get two to use in both locations.

Tablet holder hack
Bonus hack Image: James Kendrick/ZDNet

Bonus hack: Desktop shelves as pictured sometimes have folder holders on each end. These are perfect for stashing laptops and tablets out of the way when you need more surface space.

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