iPhone laser dongle makes measuring a snap

The low-power laser works with a camera app to measure distance as well as objects such as wall hangings

At the Computex 2015 trade expo in Taipei June 4, Conary Enterprise shows off the iPin Laser Ruler, an iPhone laser pointer dongle that works with a camera app to measure distances. It's slated to go on sale later this year for about US$56.

At the Computex 2015 trade expo in Taipei June 4, Conary Enterprise shows off the iPin Laser Ruler, an iPhone laser pointer dongle that works with a camera app to measure distances. It's slated to go on sale later this year for about US$56.

iPhone dongles can do everything from high-speed data transfers to testing for HIV.

At Computex 2015 in Taipei this week, a local manufacturer is showing off a laser pointer for the Apple phone that can precisely measure short distances.

The iPin Laser Ruler is a thumbnail-sized dongle that fits in the iPhone's audio jack. It houses a class 2 laser pointer that shines a dot of a light on a nearby object, such as a wall or piece of furniture. An app on the phone uses the camera to focus on the dot to determine the distance.

The app can also be used to measure shapes in the camera's view, which could be useful when trying to figure out how large a window or wall hanging is without having to measure it directly.

During a demo at the Taipei World Trade Center, the dongle was attached to an iPhone mounted on a tripod and pointed at a wall. When the camera was made to focus on the dot it gave a reading of about 1.8 meters. A staffer then chose a few other points on the wall, forming a triangle in the app's camera view, and it instantly showed the length of each side of the triangle.

The laser pointer has an accuracy of within 1 percent when used at a range of up to 3 meters, according to maker Conary Enterprise. The device follows on an earlier dongle-style laser pointer that Conary claims is the world's smallest.

The company wants to market the device to interior decorators and others working in home renovation, promising greater convenience than using an unwieldy tape measure, especially when measuring distances of several meters. It can be used on a tripod or handheld.

The iPin Laser Ruler is slated to go on sale by the end of this year for around US$56. There's no plan for an Android version of the app because Android phones don't provide enough power to the earphone jack, the company said.

Tim Hornyak covers Japan and emerging technologies for The IDG News Service. Follow Tim on Twitter at @robotopia.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags computexconsumer electronicsiPhonesmartphonesConary Enterprise

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Tim Hornyak

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Armand Abogado

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

Wireless printing from my iPhone was also a handy feature, the whole experience was quick and seamless with no setup requirements - accessed through the default iOS printing menu options.

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?