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2011-03-29 18:08:14

A Tripod for Your Smartphone?

Every week I pour over newly released Smartphones, Tablets, Pads and apps looking for the latest technology to aid REALTORS in doing their job easier, better and more efficiently.  I download apps to see if they are worthwhile, play with all kinds of hardware and read the latest technology news.  My goal is always the same -- to help folks work smarter and determine if the benefits outweigh the fuss or cost.  Well, have I got a home run for you -- a tripod mount for Smartphones.  We’re all doing so much more video than ever with the help of  Skype, AT&T’s Face Time, shooting YouTube videos and using our Smartphone cameras for just about everything, so this just might be the perfect tool/gadget for you! 

In my world,  I have Skype loaded on my iPhone and not on my computer. You ask “why?” Well, it is because the newer Smartphones typically have better cameras than most webcams.  Smartphones are now being shipped with 5, 8 and even 12 Mega Pixels including front and rear cameras.  The big problem is holding the phone still so the person on the other end doesn’t get drunk from you shaking the phone. 

So, off I went to Best Buy looking for an answer.  Well, I found nothing in the store that would work, nor have I seen any solutions on the web that I liked. I then went home and pulled out my graph paper and colored pencils and decided to build my own.  Three hours later and after a trip back to Best Buy and Lowes, I found the answer.  How about a tripod adapter for Smartphones costing $2.21?  Yep, that’s it and here are the parts you need:


One Foot of ½” Schedule 80 PVC pipe                     51 cents

Two ½” street elbows     19 cents each                       38 cents

One ½” Tee                                                                 17 cents

One ½” Cap                                                                19 cents

One T-nut ¼” – 20                                                      96 cents

                                                            Total                $2.21


I sawed, filed and glued all in about 30 minutes and was ready to test it.  All the above parts came from Lowes and back to Best Buy to pick up the tripod, SunPak Mini Flexpod for $21.99.

If you notice on the picture, I have allowed space from the bottom of the phone to the framework of the adapter. The reason is so that I can keep the phone on charge while in the tripod.  Now that I am a little further away from the phone, I decided to add a wired headset which has a boom microphone, ear piece and an across the top head support.  The phone sits in the tripod next to my computer charging with the headset connected.  I have learned it is easier to use the phone when texting, looking up contacts or anything else while it is mounted in the tripod.

Whether shooting a video for YouTube, using Skype or even taking still photos, the tripod is the answer.  Now, don’t ask me to make you one. And no, I have no plans of marketing them, but you can do this simple project by taking the list I’ve provided to the hardware store and make your own!

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