Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Proporta Universal Holster

As I mentioned before I left, I took the Proporta Universal Holster on holiday with me. Its two main functions were (a) as a belt-pouch for passports, Palm (with flight details) and mobile phone while in transit, and (b) as a safe, sand-free place tucked away inside my rucksack, for digital camera, phone and money on the beach. Despite the presence of a keyring, I found it was not very good for car keys. When flying, I found I could easily undo my belt and slip it off in the queue for security, so that it went through the x-ray scanner much like the handbag it replaces.

This 'aerial view' shows the Holster next to my T|E and a ruler. As you can see, it is too big for a pocket: strictly belt or clutch.

Here you can see the holster packed fairly full with my passport, Palm in a leather case and mobile phone. It was possible to get a second passport in as well, but not much else.

The impressive capacity of the holster is thanks to the elastic side-straps, which hold everything secure. It is also possible to use them to carry a pen or carkey. The elastic contracts enough for it to act as a secure case for a single small item like a digital camera.

The pocket where I put my phone can also be used for money and cash, plus there is another fully internal pocket for cash and cards which has a velcro closure.

For loose change there is a zippered pocket on the outside. The idea is that your coins will be easily available in the flap of the holster. Unfortunately, there is no seam at the top of this pocket, so when you open the flap, the coins slide down the back of the lining of the case, making them hard to get at.

I have not been able to take a photo to show this, but the case rides quite high on your belt, which makes it perfectly comfortable when sitting. It is made of black nylon throughout, which is tough, cheap and slightly water-resistant. It is not, however, particularly smart: more backpack and jeans than briefcase and polished shoes.

Overall, this case is excellent value for money. I don't imagine myself using it every day as a 'gentleman's handbag', but it will have many, many uses, especially when travelling or cycling. If you sometimes find yourself having too much to carry to fit in your pockets, but not enough to justify a backpack or shoulder bag, then you need a Proporta Universal Holster.

And in case you are wondering where I went on holiday: Switzerland. It may be landlocked, but they still have good beaches:

My Desk

Following The Gadgeteer, PalmAddicts is now publishing photos of reader's 'workspace'. Since I happened to tidy my office yesterday (something I do exactly 3 times a year), I thought I would take a photo for your delectation. It is not very interesting:

You can see my T|E in a E&B Slipper Case. Two paperweights (a piece of Salisbury Cathedral and a lump of fool's gold) whose primary purpose is to hold open books; a multi-card reader, my eMac; a Brando Syndicator cable which I can use with either the T|E or the card reader, and my Conran designed insulated 'french-press' coffee mug.