Olloclip, a company that has mastered iPhoneography with a series of attachable lenses, recently launched another top-of-the-line accessory for the smartphone photographer.
The Pivot ($49.99) is a pocket-sized articulating grip that easily attaches to your device to improve video and still photography. Photographers would understand the comparison to a smartphone gimbal, without a stabilization motor.
I tried the Pivot using a cased iPhone 7 along with an Olloclip 4-in-1 lens kit and found the grip was great for keeping my smartphone steady for all types of photography. It’s built with an ergonomic grip and lets users rotate 225 degrees, with locking positions to ensure the right angle.
After filming a video without the Pivot and then doing the same with it, I was sold.
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You can easily store the Pivot in a camera or computer bag; it’s light and made mostly of plastic.
Phones with screens up to 5.5 inches will attach to the mount. The top features a standard attachment for a video light, mic or other accessories, including GoPro mounts.
It’s also water resistant and can be taken for a swim when using a waterproof camera or GoPro.
Skybuds, from Alpha Audiotronics, are truly wireless earbuds ($219.99) that put superior sound in both ears.
The tiny Bluetooth earbuds pair with a device like any other wireless accessory and send audio to each ear without a wired connection.
As for the fit, I’ve tried several of these independent earbuds and some just didn’t feel right. I like how the Skybuds fit securely without the fear they will fall out and get lost.
Users have to work the volume on their device, but the Skybuds have a microphone for hands-free calls and they directly access Siri or other assistants.
The Skybuds app monitors battery levels and the Skydock, along with a range finder, helps find misplaced Skybuds
I used the Skybuds on a recent flight and they worked for all three hours; the specs have them lasting up to 4 hours before a charge is needed.
The included Skydock case stores the earbuds and has a built-in battery for charging several times before the battery needs a boost of power.
The myCharge HubPlus ($79.99) is as versatile a portable USB power source as any and allows users to charge cable free — sort of.
It’s built with 6700 mAh of portable power inside a slick looking aluminum body. When it needs a charge, just fold out the wall prongs and plug into any standard AC wall outlet.
On the side are a pair of attached cables for charging anything with USB-C or microUSB connections. If you have a different charging port, just plug your own cable into the standard USB-A port.
The battery is built with Qualcomm Quick Charge technology, which along with the myCharge SmartSense technology ensures that any compatible Quick Charge 3.0 device will charge 75 percent faster vs. devices that use standard charging methods.