We have personally never seen anyone use a car cigarette lighter socket for lighting a cigarette, so it’s baffling to us that cars still come with them for that purpose, and using it as a power source is less-than-easy when you have to have a different car charger for every device. But, thankfully someone has come up with a smart way to turn your car’s cigarette lighter into a useful charging station. The Highway Pro by Just Mobile ($40) plugs into your car’s cigarette lighter and turns it into a USB charging station for two devices. If only cars these days would come with a similar idea built-in, we’d all be a lot happier.
The small and discreet gadget plugs directly into your cigarette lighter socket and gives you one regular USB charging port and one 2.1 version for fast-charging your iPad. There is also a simpler version ($35) that only includes two regular USB ports. A built-in fuse protects the ports from power surges, and the device has a small green LED light to indicate power. The Highway Pro even comes with a spare charging cord for Apple devices.
If you don’t spend much time in your car then the $40 might not be worth it, but we see this as a godsend for commuters, folks who love a good road trip, or people who spend a good portion of the work day driving around. We’re adamantly against texting while driving, but charging while driving sounds like a good bet to us. Just don’t leave your iPad sitting in the passenger seat while you run into Starbucks for a quick morning coffee.