Posts Tagged ‘Smartphone’


SmartLens for iPhone

Originally uploaded by paulbrannan

I’m a sucker for gadgets, especially when they live up to billing, and I’ve been stupidly pleased with my latest additions – three mini-lenses that attach to my iPhone.

They give macro, wide angle and fish-eye options and are small enough to stash in a pocket.

The ingenious bit is the magnetised ring that sticks to body of the phone and to which the lenses are attracted. When not in use the lenses slide off and the slim profile of the phone is maintained.

You can buy the lenses from the wacky folks at Photojojo who, in their own words, find the best photo shiz anywhere.

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looxcieMobile video is constantly improving but all too often the best, unexpected moments are missed because the device isn’t ready or it’s in your pocket.

“Everybody gets the splash, but nobody gets the whale,” is how Looxcie’s marketing chief Bob Kron puts it.

His company makes a wearable Bluetooth camcorder which fits over the ear and continuously records video.

It stores up to five hours of material on a 4GB flash memory and the last 30-seconds of viewing are continuously buffered to be saved by a one-click, instant clip button.

To set-up, you use your smartphone (Android only for now) as a viewing screen to make sure the camera is level and pointing where you look.

Once up and running a red “video on” light illuminates.

The 30-second clips you save can be instantly shared – bandwith permitting – to pre-selected recipients or to Facebook, YouTube or Twitter.

On the face of it,  this new hardware looks like a useful addition to the journalists’  toolkit.

At $199 it’s a cheap route to video capture, and simple to use. It doesn’t involve fiddling with lots of buttons and controls so you can concentrate on what’s going on around you – and that’s important if you’re in potentially hostile environments.

It’s also less obvious than a handheld camera so less likely to trigger adverse reactions in a crowd, though there’s always the risk that someone will think you’re filming them for clandestine purposes.

And as mobile pictures from the G20 protests have shown, the increasingly levels of scrutiny mean that you can never be sure that someone, somewhere, isn’t watching – and recording – you.