An iPhone needs a stand. There, I said it. Whether for watching videos on an airplane, reading your Flipboard feeds over breakfast, or snapping rock-steady photos, nothing beats having your screen propped up at the perfect angle.
For a long while, my preferred solution was the Zero Chroma Teatro case, which includes a built-in kickstand that props your iPhone vertically or horizontally at any number of angles. Alas, over time the hinge got loose, to the point where it wouldn't prop at any angle.
So now I'm on the hunt for some kind of stand, one that supports both portrait and landscape viewing and goes where I go. And guess who just found me one? Lovable ol' Steve Wozniak, writing yesterday on Gizmodo about the Pocket Tripod.
Now a fully funded Kickstarter project, the Pocket Tripod is exactly what it sounds like: an iPhone tripod that fits in your pocket. In fact, it fits in the wallet inside your pocket, as it collapses down to become as thin as two stacked credit cards.
I've seen wallet-friendly iPhone stands before (iFoldAway, anyone?), but most of those limit you to landscape viewing and only one viewing angle. The Pocket Tripod rocks portrait and landscape alike, and leverages some pretty clever engineering to let you position your screen at just about any angle.
For the moment it's available for iPhone 4/4S and iPhone 5, with specifically sized notches for holding either model securely in place. The problem, as I see it, is that the Pocket Tripod was designed with naked iPhones in mind. Although the developer is working on "compatibility modules" that would allow it to work with certain cases, the reality is that right now, you can't use the tripod if you're also using a case.
If that's not a deal-breaker for you, funding options start at $20 for either a black or white version. The Pocket Tripod is expected to retail for $30, which I can understand given the complexity of the design -- but still strikes me as a little pricey. At $20, I might just become a backer.
On the other hand, if you're just looking to prop up your phone on the cheap, check out the four best phone stands money can't buy.
In the meantime, hit the comments and share your thoughts on this project. Was Woz right to gush?