Problem: Your iPhone takes amazing pictures, but when the sun is shining, you can’t see the damn screen. Solution: a giant eyepiece that sucks onto the iPhone’s screen and offers you a viewfinder shielded from the light of the sun. It’s called the Daylight Viewfinder, and it is coming to you via Kickstarter.
The Daylight Viewfinder is as simple as it is ingenious. To use it, you stick it to the iPhone’s screen and twist to suck out some air. Peer through the lens and you’ll see a shrunken version 216 x 612 view of the usual camera feed. That gives a view of 132,192 pixels. If you convert this into the dots measurement that camera manufacturers use to make their numbers sound bigger (three dots to a pixel) you get to 396,576, which is almost double the 202,000 dots in the LVF1 external finder I use on my Panasonic GF1. In short, Apple’s retina displays remain good even when viewed up close with a magnifying glass.
Who would want such a device? Well, the outdoor-shooting scenario is a good one, but then again you could just take a scattershot approach and delete the duds later. Low light is another good place to use a ‘finder. Not to see the screen, but because using a viewfinder means you are also steadying the camera against your head, avoiding camera shake.
This is likely to be a specialized, if not niche product, but isn’t that just what Kickstarter is for? The final retail price will be $30, and you can pick it up for either $20 or $24, depending on how fast you pledge.