It seems like every few months a new device for mobile content creation comes out with promises to change the game. In my experience, however, these products rarely live up to the hype. The newest entry into the fray is the IMStick Phone Holder from the Stick Company.
Will it fare any better?
The design of the IMStick is fairly simple – there’s a magnetic piece that attaches to the back of your phone (or its case) and then there are bendy legs that attach to the magnetic attachment. Come to think of it, if you’ve read the guide to the best phone cases for photography and the best phone tripods for social media, then you’ll have enough context to understand that the IMStick’s design is a combination of the Zytlus case and the Joby Gorillapod!
Now, the Stick Company recommends using the IMStand with the IMStick. They didn’t send me one, however, so I can’t comment on how much it adds to the IMStick. I did find that the IMStick alone had some shortcomings but felt that by adding the IMStand the usability would improve.
Did I mention that this universal smartphone mount alone will run you only $25? No, it isn’t as usable as a high-quality dedicated phone tripod, but the IMStick is certainly better than leaning your phone up against a coffee cup (thanks for the tip though, Caleb). We’ll get into the specifics of where IMStick struggles, but for now, we’ll discuss its competition.
So, does something exist that’s comparable or even better than the IMStick phone holder at the price point?
To my knowledge, no. At least, not one that does everything that the IMStick does for the cost. There are options that are less expensive but do less and there are options that do more but are more expensive.
Pop Sockets are, perhaps, the most similar to IMStick, though, they don’t serve many purposes for photos or videos. I suppose a Pop Socket provides stability when shooting, but IMStick just does it better. Add onto that the magnetic capability and the latter blows the former out of the water. But, does IMStick do enough to push the envelope? Is it worth $25?
IMStick Phone Holder or a Phone Tripod?
So, just having one of the two puts you at a disadvantage. Ideally, you want to be able to use the IMStick in tandem with a tripod. I’m going to purchase a traditional tripod from the thrift store and attach my IMStick to it because that’s a better option than my inexpensive selfie stick tripod. Why do you need the tripod?
Well, IMStick’s design features a magnet that attaches to your phone or phone case. This means there’s a magnetic side and a screen side, which also means that most times that you magnetically adhere your phone to something the camera is obstructed. As a result, sometimes connecting your IMStick out in the real world will be difficult. If you have a tripod that you can attach your IMStick to when the situation isn’t ideal for slapping it onto whatever is convenient, then this issue is mitigated.
When it comes to utilizing this baby, it pays to be experimental. The purpose of the IMStick is to do things your tripod can’t so keep this in mind when shooting. In the same vein, try to experiment with the IMStick and the tripod together. This way when you’re out shooting, you’ll have more types of shots in your arsenal.
Is the IMStick phone holder worth $25? Is it the most universal smartphone holder on the market? Well, IMStick is different; it certainly does things that its competitors simply can’t do. It takes the Pop Socket to a whole other level by giving you the ability to quickly and safely mount your smartphone to any metal surface.
IMStick does not replace a phone tripod but it’s a great addition to one. Let us know in the comments how you will use yours.