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When smartphone accessories are mentioned, the basics come to mind: cases, chargers, screen protectors, and headsets. But did you know that those aren’t your only options? You can adorn your smartphone with much more than that!
Whether you choose something wacky or something more stylish, dressing up your smartphone can be a fun endeavor. Here are 5 smartphone accessories you didn’t know you could buy.
- Selfie On A Stick
Also known as “the Selfie Stick,” Selfie On A Stick allows you to take pictures of yourself without needing someone else to do it for you. Of course close-ups are possible without someone else around to snap the pic, but they are often limited in the amount of details they can capture. For example, if you want to capture a “selfie” that includes more scenery, you’re pretty much out of luck.
Selfie On A Stick is compatible with most hand held devices, including digital cameras, extends from 9 inches to 42 inches, and is available in a variety of different colors. Now you don’t have to worry about handing your phone over when you want a pic taken. Not only can Selfie On A Stick make it easier for you to snap great looking selfies, but it can also enable you to snap great group photos as well, without having to exclude someone from the shot.
Something you should really keep in mind when sharing all these selfies is the dangers of public or unsecured Wi-Fi. With a great VPN (Virtual Private Network) service, you’re much more likely to keep your personal information protected while on the go. It will encrypt your connection to the internet, so you can post to Facebook and Instagram to your heart’s content, without having to worry about what other information you might be sending out that a hacker could grab.
- Sony QX100 Smartphone Attachable Lens-Style Camera
If your smartphone’s built-in camera isn’t cutting it, you may want to invest in a Sony QX100 Smartphone Attachable Lens-Style Camera. Retailing at $499.99, it allows you to take DSLR-quality pics on your smartphone. Paired with the PlayMemories mobile app, you are able to use the screen of your smartphone to view what you’re shooting, and the photos save both to your phone and camera.
The convenient smartphone attachment will allow you to clip it onto your phone, though it is not required, as it can connect to your device via NFC or Wi-Fi. The main thing that makes this camera better than your smartphone’s is its ability to take amazing pics in low light. The lens is a F1.8 Carl Zeiss lens with 3.6x optical zoom and its impressive low light performance is thanks to a large 1 inch EXMOR R CMOS sensor.
For those who can’t quite dish out the funds to pick up the Sony QX100, there is a QX10 model that costs only $199.99. The QX10 model won’t be give you DSLR quality pics, but is still a great option, giving you a 10x zoom rather than the 3.6x zoom that is seen in the QX100.
- Auto Mee S Mobile Device Screen Cleaning Robot
If cleaning your phone is something you’d rather not waste your time with, the Auto Mee S Mobile Device Screen Cleaning Robot may be what you need. Manufactured by the Takara Tomy Company of Japan, it’s sure to be a great conversation piece. There’s really not much to this item, as it just does what it’s intended to do: clean!
Of course it’s also a bit entertaining; appearance and capability wise, it’s a small round shaped device that is similar to a Roomba. When your phone or tablet is in need of a good cleaning, all you do is turn it on, set it down on the screen, and watch the magic unfold.
Although this item cannot be found in stores in the U.S., it’s available for purchase for under $25 on Amazon.com, as well as on some online specialty shops.
- Snow Lizard SLXTREME Cases
Snow Lizard offers cases for the Bear Grylls in you. If you often find yourself on an adventure and need to keep your phone both protected and full of battery life, then you’ll definitely want to pick up one of their cases. Water proof and equipped with a solar panel so you can charge without electricity, Snow Lizard’s SLXTREME case is by far the most rugged smartphone accessory out there.
Besides being waterproof and having a solar panel, the case offers military grade protection against dust, dirt, sand, and falls from up to 6.6 feet. It can even withstand snow exposure, as well as humidity and high temperatures. The SLXTREME case is available for iPhone 4/4S, iPhone 5/5S, iPhone 6, Samsung Galaxy S5, and even the iPad 4.
Depending on which device you have, the case retails somewhere between $59.99 and $199.99.
- Parrot AR.Drone 2.0 Elite Edition
If watching drones on YouTube wasn’t enough, you can buy your own! The Parrot AR.Drone 2.0 Elite Edition is a drone that you can control from your smartphone. Available for both iOS and Android, you can control the drone completely from the AR.FreeFlight app.
Equipped with an HD camera, the AR.Drone 2.0 has 720p live video streaming and recording, as well as photo capturing capability. You can easily share photos and videos and keep track of your flights, all with your smartphone. If you plan to use the drone primarily for recording videos, you may be interested in the Director Mode, which allows you to program automatic camera movements, as well as change the camera’s settings.
The Parrot AR.Drone 2.0 Elite Edition is available on Amazon.com for $299.99. The accompanying app is free to download, though there are in-app purchases (Director Mode being one of them).
Whether you prefer something a bit kooky or something with more functionality, it seems there is a smartphone accessory for just about everyone, just as there are apps. It may be something as simple as taking better pictures, or it may be as complicated as spying on the world through your personal drone: whatever the “case,” the era of the smartphone is marching forward at breakneck pace. But if it’s going too fast for you, don’t worry, there’s bound to be some accessory out there to rewind it and watch it in slow motion.
Author: Andy Quayle
Andy was born in the Isle of Man and currently lives in Pittsburgh.
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