The ViW Wide-Angle Lens Attachment Keeps Everyone in Frame During Video Calls

The ViW Wide-Angle Lens Attachment Keeps Everyone in Frame During Video Calls

Many of us now live far from family, friends, and even our workplace. Nothing can replace being physically present, but the next best thing is video calling. It is the most intuitive form of digital interaction currently available — but there are challenges. Quite apart from the need for decent broadband, many devices give us only a cramped, dim view of the people we are talking to. A connection is difficult to improve, but a new webcam accessory named ViW could solve the visual deficiencies.

As with many of the best ideas, ViW is a product that solves a problem experienced by its creators — a Swedish design firm, named Frankly. Video calling is a key method of communication for this company, especially when multiple parties need to share thoughts from afar. However, many devices have front-facing cameras which are designed to capture just one face. It means that a group of three must sit a long way back from a desk in order to be seen, and individuals have little room to expand their explanations.

The ViW Wide-Angle Lens Attachment Keeps Everyone in Frame During Video Calls

This is where ViW comes in. It fits over any in-built webcam, using its own glass lens to widen the angle of view by fifty per cent without causing distortion. It works much like the clip-on lenses you can buy for your phone’s camera, but it can stick to any smooth surface, thanks to a reverse side that is covered in thousands of tiny suction cups. Once in place, the ViW senses ambient light levels, and can illuminate the caller’s face with its own LED lights. It is powered by an internal battery, which recharges via USB.

At the time of writing, Frankly is raising money on Kickstarter to put ViW into production. Early-bird backers can pledge kr699 (approx. $82) to pre-order the intelligent lens, while the regular retail price will be something closer to kr799 (approx. $94). Delivery is scheduled for March 2016.

Mark is best known for writing about apps, but he also loves the tactile, hardware side of technology. Being a professional photographer, he's pretty handy with a camera, and he's a self-confessed tweetaholic.
Join the Discussion

You Might Also Like

10 Kitchen gadgets you’ll wish you bought ages ago

10 Kitchen gadgets you’ll wish you bought ages ago

There are certain things that a well-equipped kitchen needs, like a digital smart scale for ground coffee or a touchless soap dispenser. Practical and well-built, they make your daily kitchen tasks easier and less chore-like. They’re the kitchen gadgets you..
Powered by MovementOS, the Altis AI personal trainer customizes your workouts and monitors your form

Powered by MovementOS, the Altis AI personal trainer customizes your workouts and monitors your form

Take your workouts to the digital age with the Altis AI personal trainer. This AI workout device looks like a sleek soundbar, blending into your decor. Place it beneath your TV where it sees and hears you, modifying your form..
10 Travel-friendly kid gadgets to take with you on your vacation

10 Travel-friendly kid gadgets to take with you on your vacation

Traveling with your kids isn’t always easy. Between long plane rides and windy car trips, tackling kid boredom in transit takes some strategy. Luckily, there are devices that can make the journey easier. And, to help you find them, we’re..
Top board games of the week: Septima, Muskoka, and Cyberpunk 2077: Gangs of Night City

Top board games of the week: Septima, Muskoka, and Cyberpunk 2077: Gangs of Night City

Ready for another edition of Gadget Flow’s top board games of the week? From a tavern-based RPG supplement to a ghostly card game, this week’s list has something for every board game enthusiast. Yes, this week saw the promotion of..
This electromagnetic guitar pick lets you strum without touching the strings

This electromagnetic guitar pick lets you strum without touching the strings

Play your guitar in a new way with the X Pick multi-effect guitar & bass pick. Relying on magnetism that’s been calibrated to the extreme, this electromagnetic guitar pick lets you play without touching the strings. As a musician, you’re..
Best Bluetooth speakers for your summer adventures

Best Bluetooth speakers for your summer adventures

If you’re planning an active vacation this summer— like hiking through national parks or backpacking around the Meditteranean—you’ll want a Bluetooth speaker that can keep up with you. And might we suggest some of the best Bluetooth speakers for summer..