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Sci & Tech

Elephant Card overview: a intelligent and reasonably priced iPhone Continuity Digicam mount


The Elephant Card is a transportable mount for Mac homeowners who need to use their iPhone as a webcam with macOS Ventura’s new Continuity Camera feature. Not solely does it fold flat for simple portability, nevertheless it additionally works with or with out iPhone circumstances in my testing and attaches to each my MacBook’s show and desktop monitor. 

Higher but, it truly resembles an elephant with its tusks and ears creating the mounting factors. That’s lovable, made much more so by the mount’s tiny $7.99 / €7.49 price ticket, which returns to the common $9.99 / €9.90 listing value after Monday, November twenty eighth.

To make use of the mount, you merely unfold the 2 “tusks” that maintain your iPhone, which sends the “ears” backward to create two small hooks that match over your Mac’s show. It’s a really intelligent design from the massive minds at TeamNobile, the design collective based mostly in Vienna, Austria, liable for the equally creative AirBell.

The Elephant Card is designed for MacBooks which have lengthy suffered from notoriously dangerous webcams built-in into their ultra-thin shows. Nevertheless it additionally suits the favored Dell UltraSharp U2720Q desktop monitor I’ve related to a Mac Mini. The Elephant Card’s ears are nowhere close to deep sufficient to grip your complete thickness of the Dell monitor, however they only occur to slide securely into the air vents situated all alongside the highest of the show. In case your desktop monitor lacks such gildings, then it doubtless received’t work with the Elephant Card mount.

The mount’s ears hooked up simply to my 12-inch MacBook, as anticipated. However identical to we found when testing the $29.95 Belkin mount, the MacBook’s hinges aren’t actually designed to carry heavy objects like iPhones. The hinge on my light-weight MacBook supported the mixed weight of my iPhone 11 Professional and case till the angle exceeded about 25–30 levels, after which gravity took management. On one event, the mounted cellphone brought on the MacBook to tip over in order that the iPhone (flippantly) smacked the desk — I used to be glad I left it within the case. To its credit score, the Elephant Card stored maintain of the iPhone and MacBook at the same time as I reflexively snapped the show upright.

The “ears” don’t supply probably the most safe mount to your costly iPhone. Care is required to stop an accident.

That being stated, the ear hooks that relaxation alongside the highest fringe of the MacBook show create a fairly slim and flimsy mounting level. I managed to bump the iPhone as soon as, inflicting it to return unfastened from the MacBook and fall onto the desk with the Elephant Card nonetheless hooked up. Utilizing the mount on Apple’s lightest MacBooks, particularly, requires some care to keep away from accidents. For instance, I wouldn’t advocate common use of the Elephant Card with a MacBook positioned in your lap whereas seated on a chair excessive above a concrete flooring — your iPhone is simply asking for hassle.

The mount holds the iPhone at a hard and fast angle, however that limitation didn’t current an issue in my testing. I might both regulate the MacBook’s show sufficient to be in body for Zoom calls, or I might depend upon Continuity Digicam’s Middle Stage function to routinely crop and heart my face when mounted on the upper Dell monitor. 

The Elephant Card is inside a brown leather wallet held in a hand. The elephant’s eye peaks out.

The Elephant Card folds up flat and suits simply into even compact wallets.

The Elephant Card shares the size and width of a normal bank card, nevertheless it’s twice as thick. It simply suits into even compact wallets, nevertheless it could be too thick when you’re pondering of compacting it into the area between your iPhone and the case. For my setup, it created sufficient of a bulge within the case to partially expose a number of the show’s edges to impacts.

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Not like the Logitech webcam, the Elephant Card can’t swivel. No worries, Apple’s Middle Stage function routinely centered my face regardless of the iPhone’s excessive mounting place.

All in all, it’s laborious to search out any main faults with an adjunct that gives a lot utility to Apple customers for lower than $10. The present 20 p.c low cost makes it particularly compelling now that gift-giving season is upon us.

Elephant Card is accessible in blue or grey for the discounted value of $7.99 / €7.49 by way of Cyber Monday, with 50 cents from each buy going on to SaveElephant.org to assist with the rescuing and care of Asian elephants.

All pictures by Thomas Ricker / The Verge

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