Turn an Old Hotel Room-Key Into an iPhone Stand

Last Updated Oct 8, 2009 1:10 PM EDT

iPhones, iPod Touches, and various smartphones are great for watching movies and TV shows on planes and trains, but some kind of stand is absolutely essential.

(Take it from someone who's spent two hours holding his iPhone at an upright angle.)

If you still have your hotel room-key floating around in your pocket, you can pull a Macgyver move and turn it into a solid, stable iPhone stand.


Instructables has the instructions, but there's nothing terribly tricky about this: Just fold the card into the shape shown in the photo.

(This should also work with any similar piece of plastic, such as a used Starbucks card or gift card.)

You may have to fiddle a bit with the folds to get just the right viewing angle, and not all cards will stay in their folded positions.

But in a pinch, this is a perfect way to prop up your phone. And it's a lot sturdier than my previous favorite, the business-card stand. Plus, you get the satisfaction of using that room key for something practical instead of just tossing it into a landfill.

While we're on the subject of iPhone stands:

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    Rick Broida, a technology writer for more than 20 years, is the author of more than a dozen books. In addition to writing CNET's The Cheapskate blog, he contributes to CNET's iPhone Atlas.