tripod, smartphone stand

A $10 Kickstarter pledge could get you an ultra portable smartphone stand that doubles as a key fob

This nifty key fob smartphone stand called Snapshot has 11 days to go on Kickstarter and you can get one for ten bucks (including free shipping).

It  actually consists of two parts  i) the Snapshot itself which is the smart phone grip/mount (the keyfob+chain) and ii) a separate flexible tripod appropriately called the “Stand”. It works with various smartphones including iPhone 4/5/6 and Samsung Galaxy (although it might not work with the new iPhone 6 Plus – but you can ask them at the bottom of their Kickstarter page). Snapshot also works with any camera tripod with a standard 1/4″ screw thread.

The $10 is a good deal considering the lowest-price smartphone tripod I’ve seen is $15 (Joby MPod Mini) and the Joby GripTight Mount by itself (no stand) is $20.  Caveats: they’re not U.S. based and their website is a little strange given that it shows leather goods and not smartphone stands – but maybe they’re just expanding into new product lines.

If you’re using or plan to use a spare smartphone as a security/surveillance camera with an app like Gotya, you might want to check it out.


IFTTT adds Revolv to smart home channel arsenal

As noted in a previous post about the new MyFox IFTTT channel, IFTTT keeps adding smart home channels (actually, smarthome vendors keep adding their own IFTTT channels via the IFTTT Channel Platform).

Today it was revealed that the Revolv IFTTT Channel will be available by the end of this month and will include the unique capability to create IFTTT Recipes right from within the Revolv app.

Revolv is the second major smart home Hub vendor after SmartThings to have their own IFTTT Channel.  Smart home Hubs bring in even more devices into the IFTTT fold via indirect integration (IFTTT <-> Hub Channel <-> Devices that work with Hub).

Wouldn’t be surprised to see one of the big smart home vendors like Google/Nest or Samsung/SmartThings scoop up IFTTT. This would give the acquirer more leverage, control, and faster time to market  in increasing the size and reach of not only their automation-compatible smart home device/sensor ecosystem but also mashups with external Web services like The Weather Channel, Dropbox, Twitter, and so on. The more devices and sevices that consumers/end users can automate and stitch together via recipes, the higher the value and more use cases available.

Also expect IFTTT to add “compound” recipes where more than one trigger (“THIS”) can result in one or more actions (“THAT”), like Wigwag does.

Party on, smart home!

myfox, ifttt

IFTTT Adds to their Smart Home Channel Arsenal with Myfox

Automation service IFTTT recently added  the Myfox Channel.  Myfox is a French home security and automation platform  that consists of three things:

i) Door/window intrusion detectors called TAG

ii) Video surveillance camera

iii) App for control and monitoring for iOS and Android

This brings the growing number of smart home Channels on IFTTT to three: SmartThings, Manything, and Myfox.

As noted in a previous blog post about IFTTT, any IP/WiFi home security camera that has motion detection and email alerts (which pretty much all do)  can be used as a trigger using the IFTTT Gmail channel, enabling a given camera to trigger actions by connecting the Gmail channel to any other IFTTT channel by creating or using an existing Recipe.

IFTTT is becoming an increasingly valuable service for smart home and Internet of Things users.

IFTTT, motion alerts, Gotya

Use any WiFi Security Camera as IFTTT Trigger with Gmail Channel

IFTTT (IF This Then That) is a freemium service that enables you to connect your smart home/IoT (Internet of Things) devices including WiFi security cameras to a world of Web apps such as The Weather Channel, Instagram, Twitter, Gmail, and Dropbox, to name but 5 of the 128 available “Channels”.  In addition to Web apps Channels there are also native Android and iOS Channels such as notifications and location, as well as email, SMS, and phone call channels. When something happens on a (Trigger) Channel, IFTTT enables something else to happen on another (Action) Channel.

Any IP/WiFi camera that has motion detection and email alerts can work with IFTTT as a Trigger using the Gmail Channel. For example this recipe uses Dropcam motion alerts to turn on a WeMo Light Switch.

Gotya can also turn on your Wemo Light Switch just like Dropcam does. All you need to do is i) replace with in the Gmail from address field as shown below and ii) make sure the Gmail address that you enter into the Gmail Channel  is the same as your Gotya Alert email address (in the Gotya app, go to Camera->Settings or Remote Controller->Select Camera->Operation).

IFTTT, trigger, wemo

As a second example of using Gotya to trigger an IFTTT channel, when Gotya detects motion it can send you an SMS alert using this recipe (you’ll need to modify it to specify your own mobile phone# and Gmail address). As with the first example, make sure the Gmail address that you enter into the Gmail Channel  is the same as your Gotya Alert email address (in the Gotya app, go to Camera->Settings or Remote Controller->Select Camera->Operation).

The  SMS alerts include the URL with the picture stored on the Gotya Cloud. For security reasons you’ll need to login to the Gotya Cloud Service each time.

motion detection sms alert, IFTTT

Gotya motion detection SMS alert with link to picture in Gotya cloud


There is currently only one WiFi home security camera (actually an iOS app) called Manything, that has it’s own “proper” / native IFTTT channel, enabling it to be connected to all of the 128 Channels and can be used both as a Trigger and an Action in a Recipe (and not just as a Trigger via the Gmail Channel as this article has focused on). Expect this list to grow dramatically as IFTTT has recently raised a $30M Series B Round and is going to make their Channel Platform available to a lot more developers.

SmartThings has done an unofficial integration with Dropcam and SmartThings has their own IFTTT channel, so there’s potentially other stuff that you can do with the combination of Dropcam, SmartThings, and IFTTT, but that’s perhaps a topic for another blog post. A quick search of “SmartThings Dropcam” on IFTTT Browse Recipes returned zero results.

Let us know if you have created or use any IFTTT recipes for your IP/WiFi security camera in the Comments!