Products & Reviews
Cellpod, a cute little tripod for your Treo
Mon May 29, 2006 - 10:19 PM EDT - By
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> Overview Operation Conclusion
Overview Hold the phone. Hold it steady
now streak into the picture before the music stops. In my ongoing TreoCentral series about getting decent pictures out of the Treos' digital cameras, I've lamented the Smartphones' omission of tripod attachability. The cute and clever Cellpod takes over nicely where quarter-twenty threads got left off.
Weighing a mere two ounces, the ingenious Cellpod, by Joy Innovations, offers amazingly steady support for your Treo, or any other tripod-socket-challenged PDA or camera. Its sturdy plastic legs unfold far out to form a low-profile footprint the size of a CD jewel case. Resilient silver-colored booties prevent the legs from damaging the surface, while also providing an excellent, non-skid grip. Even a full-sized, professional tripod would envy the "bite" this little gem puts down. It's steadier than any rock musician and twice as cute - for one thing, rock musicians don't generally come in translucent blue. Not since the 60's, anyway.
Usability The Cellpod arrives all folded up, with a mounting button and an extra circular chunk of mounting tape. Watch out for that self-adhesive button! Its instant-grab glue is permanent beyond your wildest imagination, and where you put it on the Treo definitely matters. I found out the hard way.
Unwilling to glue anything permanent to my trusty Treo, I scrounged eBay for a duplicate battery compartment door. Seidio's Battery Cover with Reset Hole [ Info | Buy ] would have been a better idea. Counting the shipping charge, I chose the more expensive, less convenient route, but I wanted to test on a real Treo part without altering my original, as it often poses for pictures in these pages.
Even if your Treo doesn't have to do portrait duty, you might want a spare battery door to use with the Cellpod. With the button attached, the Treo will not easily slip into my E&B Slipper case [ Review | Buy ]. The Treo will go in, but I wouldn't call it a "fit" by any means. If you normally use a pouch case, or if you throw your Treo (gasp!) unprotected into a book bag, purse, or whathaveyou, and if you're not too OCD to withstand its clean, curvy design being distended by the button, then don't worry too much about the extra battery cover. However, please don't tell me about it. I don't want to know.
I put the button on my spare battery cover while the cover lay on the desk. I should have thought it out better - I stuck it too close to the top of the cover. I did that on purpose, to lower the center of gravity of the resulting Treo-on-Cellpod. I didn't need to. No harm done, but I ended up with a low-riding Treo that would have been more comfortable to use if I'd put the button a couple inches lower.
Although only one adhesive button comes with the Cellpod, replacement (or additional buttons) are available from the company for $2 each plus shipping.
The Cellpod has plenty of reach, though not much heft, and it supports the Treo beautifully in nearly any position, even pointing up. My only reservation is that the Cellpod's large back leg, larger than the others as though the product's lineage includes some fiddler crabs, isn't heavy enough to balance the Treo's frontward pull. Although the assembly is in no danger of tipping forward on a flat, level surface, it might be less steady, or even unsteady, on a forward-slanted surface like an automobile's hood.
The solution is to mount the Treo over the back leg, facing the opposite direction of what the instructions indicate. That situates the Treo's weight over the tripod leg pushing down, not over. Check the picture to get a better idea of what this verbiage is trying to say.
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