Smartphone mounts

Posted by malenki on 28 July 2014 in English (English). Last updated on 29 July 2014.

Since I got borrowed a Smartphone from Mapillary (more about that soon) but no mounts for car nor anything, I had to make up some. As I needed one for the car I had nothing usable with me than an old T-Shirt which was dedicated for cleaning purposes. I just ripped a strip from it – et violá: Handyhalterung fürs Auto lowest cost smartphone mount ever
A sequence recorded this way

A mount for walking was not as easy to create. I purchased what seemed to be a durable smartphone cover for about 8 EUR and a 30 cm long strip of 5 cm wide hook-and-loop fastener for ~1,50 EUR.

From hooks part of strip I cut two parts each as long as the smartphone cover was wide. Those I glued to the back of the smartphone. The other half of the hooks strip I glued back to back to the loops strip. Hooks and loops So I had a wristband and was able to use the the smartphone as smartwatch with the biggest screen ever: multi purpose scratchy wristband multi purpose scratchy wristband Biggest and most inexpensive smartwatch ever Biggest and most inexpensive smartwatch ever
phone backside with hooks phone backside with hooks
(You should spare some loop strip to cover the hooks not covered by the mount. Else it could happen that the hooks stick now and then to the shirt you wear.)

But since I also want to use the smartphone with Mapillary while walking, I had to work a little more and punched some ugly holes into the side of the cover. Now the phone could be put into the cover with the back to the front without the buttons being pushed all the time. ruined smartphone case To use it while walking I put the hook-and-loop Band around the left shoulder strap of the backpack, let the Mapillary app record in walking mode, put it back-to-front into the cover and attach the latter to the hook-and-loop band (aka mount) at the shoulder strap.
Addendum: Maybe one should also consider to mount the camera at the shoulder strap a little more to the sternum and away from the arm since it seems I lifted it a little with the arm sometimes. Trekking with a lot of hardwareI looking a bit knackered after walking some km with the stuff


Comment from DaCor on 28 July 2014 at 20:53

I love the simplicity of it

You images in the car as clear. Any I’ve tried with Mapillary have been blurred and useless. Were you driving slowly or is there a phone setting you used?

Comment from malenki on 29 July 2014 at 04:16

I was driving normally and hadn’t used special settings. The phone (Sony Xperia Z1 compact” is supposed to have a “good” camera – at least compared to other smart phones.
When you look at the sequence here recorded while walking you will see that the lens is not very fast and thus some images are shaky and/or blurred. A good compact camera would handle such situations better, but it is worth a lot to have both hands free while walking.

For settings: in Mapillary you can (un)check a setting to always use autofocus, else it is fixed focus all the time. I will try the latter to see if the number of blurred images decreases. It also has the setting “Disable Stable Shot” which after its description seems to cause a higher number of blurry images if disabled. (I had stable shot enabled all the time)

Comment from marscot on 29 July 2014 at 09:09

great stuff, in car I use an old Iphone car mount for my samsung phone to catch pictures, I might try your walking idea.

Comment from flohoff on 7 August 2014 at 21:19

I stopped taking Mapillary images from inside the car. Reflections on the front windscreen make images of less quality. And on most car/mobile phone combinations you’ll have some bonnet on the lower part of the screen.

This is my solution with a little wood sawing and 2 screws:

Car Roofmount

Comment from BrunoRemy on 17 November 2014 at 21:56

My experience was positive with smartphone attached as a dashcam in my car. However, I noticed that talking pictures/videos when walking failed due to shakes done by every single hit on floor by each feet. These vertical moves may blur images, mostly with insuffisent sunlight that causes longer pose speed for snapshots.

@flohoff : amazing mounting kit! Unfortunatly haven’t such open roof ;-)

My two cents…

Comment from malenki on 19 November 2014 at 06:08

@Bruno: Agree to your observations regarding blurred images du to shake/lack of light (or better: slow lens). Despite that there remains a big amount of good images – as of today all Mapillary imagery in Albania is by me, mostly done while walking, so have a look at it. :)

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