What exactly is a gadget? Gadget has a very broad meaning and can include the simplest mechanical devices or tools, whether ingenious or novel. Scary fact: the first atomic bomb was named ''the gadget''. When I think about this word, Inspector Gadget with his hat-helicopterfrom my childhood pops into my head. Whether you call it a gizmo, a jigger, a gimmick or a thingamabob, we present to you the ''Gadget of the Week'': the keyprop!
What exactly is it?
What is a keyprop? Well it's a small ''key'' made of a soft polycarbonate plastic that comes in a variety of colors. The purpose it serves is described in the name: a prop. It will support your smartphone to facilitate taking pictures in which you actually appear. You can read your morning newsfeed while sipping your hot cup of Joe, read a recipe while baking up a storm, hands full of cake batter and watch a movie while eating popcorn and cuddling up with that special someone. Basically, the point is that your hands are free to do other things while looking at your smartphone's screen or when taking a timed picture. The keyprop was created by a company called integral and it is a Kickstarter project. The designer behind this new gadget is Alison Wong, ex-Apple and Motorola employee. Integral also has other cool gizmos like the compact chop sticks, cardstick and flipcase.
How it works
You stick the cylindrical part of the key end into the headphone jack of pretty much any smartphone, whether an iOS or an Android device. The most bottom part goes around the whole side of your phone and acts as a stop while the weight of your keys supports the entire smartphone mass. Obviously, the closer the keys to the device, the straighter it will be. This will only work when the phone is in the horizontal position but it can also be used for larger devices as big as the Note series (so even your Nexus 7, Xperia Z Ultra and the like).
I originally thought that the keyprop would be cheap, like around the 4 dollar mark. And then I remembered that a synonym for gadget is gimmick. The retail price of the gadget accessory is set at $12.25 (much more than the Kickstarter price) and though it is quite the innovative idea, it is not novel enough for me to spend that much on a plastic keychain. Though this has filled a gap in the market for the simple and useful, the price is a little steep. Had this gadget not appeared in the office, I would've likely not taken the time to try it out. But if you think that it's worth $12.25, then be my guest. Another thing I must poo-poo about them is that their self-timer app with clap-to-snap feature is only available for iPhones. All in all, it’s a great idea, simple to use, an easy way to prop your phone in order to free up your hands, though the price could be cut in half.
If you missed last week’s Gadget of the Week, check out the Sony Cyber-shot QX10.