This article was written by Hunting Consultant David Virostko for our September, 2014 magazine. If you are unfamiliar with Phone Skope, it will change the way you scout and hunt.
It’s amazing how quickly a great invention can have you questioning how you ever lived without it. Most things that improve our lives have a tendency to do that. Such is the case with the Phone Skope. Having been heavily involved in the hunting industry for the past 14 years, I have seen a lot of gadgets come and go. In fact, to be completely truthful, I can only think of a few of those gadgets that have come and stayed. Crooked Horn’s “bino harness” obviously jumps out in my mind as a revolutionary invention to the hunting industry. The same can be said for OnXmaps and their Google Earth overlays of unit and private property boundaries. Both of these examples have come to be known as “game changers.” In my personal and professional opinion, the same can be said for the company known as Phone Skope.
What is Phone Skope?
Before I get into the basics of what Phone Skope is and its functions, options, pricing, etc., I want to start out by simply stating that for any passionate hunter or outdoorsman, Phone Skope is an invention geared solely toward enabling you to capture and preserve those moments in the great outdoors that make it all worthwhile.
For someone who has used Phone Skope for the last few years, I have a tendency to get wrapped up in thinking that people are as familiar as I am with what Phone Skope actually is. To break it down in the simplest of forms, let me just say this, Phone Skope is a cell phone case with an eyepiece adapter that allows you to combine your cell phone with your preferred optics of choice. Phone Skope is NOT a camera, it is NOT the optics, it is NOT a phone; Phone Skope is simply the device that allows you to combine your phone’s camera with your optics.
There are actually two parts to the Phone Skope kit — the case and the adapter. From the iPhone to the Samsung, there are cases available for any and all smartphones and androids on the market today. In addition, the Phone Skope case acts just as well, if not better, than any and all traditional phone cases. Therefore, there really is no need to have anything other than the Phone Skope case as your one and only protection device for your phone.
The second part of the Phone Skope kit is the adapter. There are several Phone Skope adapters to fit your individual binocular and/or spotting scope make, model, and size. For example, I have a Samsung Galaxy S4 and I use a Leica Televid 77 for my long range glassing, so my Phone Skope kit contains the case for a Galaxy S4 and then the adapter specifically for my Leica Televid 77. When you order your Phone Skope kit, you will have two questions to answer — 1) what phone do you have, and 2) what optics will you be coupling your phone with? Each guy’s setup will be tailor-made to his specific phone and choice of optics. It’s that simple.
The Functions of Phone Skope
As explained above, the basic function of the Phone Skope is to enable you to maximize your phone’s camera by coupling it with binoculars, spotting scopes, telescopes, or just about any other type of optics you can imagine. You already own the expensive portion of this setup, the phone and the optics, and Phone Skope is simply the missing link to make both of them work together.
Having been a guide and outfitter for quite some time now, I can’t put into words how important it is to be able to capture video and photos of your upcoming targets, not just for the purpose of being able to share the fun with your clients prior to their hunt taking place, but also so that you have a fair chance at evaluating that buck or that bull after you get back home when there is no emotion involved. From the avid videographer to the guy just starting out, the ease and ability that the Phone Skope offers is almost too good to be true. In fact, I keep my Phone Skope kit on my phone 24/7/365. That way, even if I am just out for an evening ride with my family, if something is seen that needs to be videoed, I am ready to go in minimal time!
Note: When shooting video through your Phone Skope, be sure and have your phone in the horizontal (sideways) position. Do not take video with your phone vertical (up and down). By keeping your phone horizontal during recording, the video will have been taken in the correct position for the correct video dimensions for playback on a normal screen.
Once you have captured the photos and/or video, it’s easy to share your data with Facebook friends, email, or Dropbox. This eliminates the need to get out your camera, hook it up to the computer, transfer the files, and then share. Phone Skope eliminates all the mess. Another awesome feature is that you can video chat with your friends in real time! From anywhere, you can video chat and your friends can be looking through your spotting scope at the same time you are.
Why Phone Skope?
In today’s world, I can hardly think of a time when I don’t have my phone with me. When I am out in the hills I always have two things — my phone and my optics. That right there is the beauty of the Phone Skope. With my Phone Skope kit I now have the chance to put both my camera phone with my optics and get some awesome videos and photos; all of this is literally at no extra weight and at minimal cost.
The hunting video market is flooded to the max, and although I know a lot of people who are hoping to be the next George Lucas of wildlife videography, the truth of the matter is that we are all just average guys wanting to video our scouting and hunting adventures to share with our friends and family. I know of no better way to do that than with Phone Skope.
What Does it Cost?
As mentioned above, I have been in the hunting industry for quite some time now. In addition, I have also been a part of filming, editing, and producing some of the best western hunting DVDs in the last decade. Because of this, I have used some very sophisticated equipment, and I won’t deny it, the end results speak for themselves. However, all of that comes at a steep price. That’s just it, though, for the top-end quality of video and photos that the average guy can get with the Phone Skope, you don’t need to take out a loan to make it all happen. In fact, the average Phone Skope kit costs around $75 for both the phone case and the optics adapter! That’s right, for around $75 you can be capturing incredible video and photos as easy as 1, 2, 3.
I am here to tell you that for the ease of use, the functionality, and the affordability that the Phone Skope provides, you would be insane not to trust me on this. While all of this might sound a little overinflated as Phone Skope is an endorsed advertiser with Huntin’ Fool®, it truly isn’t. I have never sold out, and I never will. I stand behind PhoneSkope as one of the most utilized tools in my scouting and hunting arsenal. In my personal and professional opinion, Phone Skope has definitely earned a place as a game changer in the industry, and that doesn’t happen very often or very easily. Get your Phone Skope ordered today at www.phoneskope.com and start capturing incredible memories of your own!