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snappgrip: full control of your iPhone camera with one hand's video poster

Snap-on camera controls for your smartphone with shutter, zoom and mode. Great when you're using them. Pocketable when you're not. Read more

pledged of £18,000 goal
seconds to go


This project was successfully funded on January 28, 2013.

Snap-on camera controls for your smartphone with shutter, zoom and mode. Great when you're using them. Pocketable when you're not.

About this project

snappgrip provides camera controls for smartphones. The snappgrip controller mounts to a protective phone case so that you can conveniently attach it when you want to use your handset for some serious photography.

It's soooo convenient!

You probably protect your phone with a case. We've got one of those too... but ours can transform your photography experience.

Snap on the snappgrip controller and gain access to real shooting controls including:


  • full press to take picture
  • half press to focus
Shooting Mode
  • Portrait
  • Landscape
  • Flash
  • Video
  • Zoom In
  • Zoom Out

On the underside you'll find a standard tripod mount, standby power switch and a micro-USB port for charging.

Stylish, pocketable and convenient, snappgrip is the phone accessory you can carry every day to take advantage of your phone's camera capabilities.

We have a companion app for iOS and Android and are working to provide our API to app developers to embed in their own photograhy apps.


  • Works with: iPhone 4, iPhone 5 and Samsung Galaxy S3
  • App available for iOS and Android
  • Colours: Silver/Black, Silver/White/Brown, limited edition gold plated Kickstarter edition
  • Phone case with removable camera controller. Wriststrap loop.
  • App connectivity: Bluetooth
  • Tripod Mount: Universal 1/4” thread; compatible with all standard tripods
  • Power: micro USB for charging. ~60 hours standby.

Production & Launch

We have a beautiful working prototype and we're encouraged by the feedback from people we speak to. This Kickstarter campaign is our opportunity to finesse the product before production and of course get that funding boost that can fast-track our production.

Once we're funded we will be able to quickly manufacture the first snappgrip batch and ship them to our project backers. We are fortunate that we have good connections with proven manufacturing facilities in the far east allowing us to quickly manage production, QA and shipping without learning these processes along the way. If you check our team biography below you'll see that we've been involved with consumer electronics design, manufacturing and distribution for a while so although the unexpected will always find ways to trip you up, if this funding programme is successful, we will be repeating processes that we've undertaken at other times in our careers.

Please Give Us Feedback!

We're really excited by this project. The prototype looks great, handles brilliantly and works well. We don't believe we're proud parents of an ugly baby.  The feedback we keep receiving from prototype previews seems to validate our excitement. There's nothing like getting feedback from potential customers however and getting reaction to the product is very important to us as part of the Kickstarter process.

As we've highlighted above, we're especially interested to receive feedback about:

  • What other handsets you'd like to see
  • Photography apps to target and work with 

and we're interested to gather as many project comments as we can.

Building a Business

Using snappgrip

We've found that using our prototype is extremely comfortable and it works well. The industrial design and product name gives a clue to what the product does and we think that the target retail price (£69 / €79 / $99) is realistic for the physical quality and functionality of the product. We're hopeful that this will be the first of several products in this range and a good start for our venture.


As we go through the Kickstarter programme we'll be pulling together a web retail site so that we can sell directly once we know that we are in production. We also have good contacts in various retailers and distributors so we aim to make snappgrip an easily available mass market product.


Through our e-commerce store we will offer a range of complementary accessories including:

- a carrying pouch for the snappgrip controller

- a snappgrip-branded mohzy loop USB/micro-USB charging cable

- a snappgrip-branded mini-tripod

and we envisage this line up as presenting a good set of pocket-sized photography equipment. We will also offer the snappgrip case as a solo item so that multiple handset households can share a single snappgrip controller.

We're making various accessories and combination sets available as pledge rewards for this Kickstarter campaign.

The Team

My business partner Rex Chen and I have long term experience in designing consumer electronics products and bringing them to market. This may be why I have no hair left and he works 36 hours per day...

I ran a UK-based distribution business for a number of years that was adept at spotting and launching new innovative products. We launched the Slim Devices Squeezebox in 2002 (that was subsequently acquired then discontinued by Logitech), Skullcandy headphones in 2003 and I was a co-owner of Dension Audio Systems where we created the world's first in-car iPod integration kit in 2003 that sold over 2m units under our own brand and to car makers.

Rex is based in China and has strong experience in designing and manufacturing OEM products for famous brands and managing teams of engineers and developers.

After working together on various projects, we've decided to combine our resources to bring our first product to market. We've set up a new company - cooltopia Ltd - which will design, manufacture and sell our products. snappgrip is our venture's first creation and we're inspired by the opportunity that Kickstarter brings, allowing us to get instant feedback and accelerate product launches. 

snappgrip - a project from cooltopia - a world of cool products

Risks and challenges

1. Project Financing
It is so hard to raise finance for projects these days. On the flipside, it means that we have to be leaner, more creative and more driven than ever. The beauty of Kickstarter and what we are looking forward to learning about this process as a result of this project is that we get real market feedback before we have committed non-reversable sums to tooling and production.

Our project risk is simply that we don't fund the remaining tooling and first production batch. With your help through a successful Kickstarter campaign we can and our project costs and business plan are conservative and secure such that we are confident post-campaign of building a sustainable business around snappgrip.

2. Handset Support
Apple. Samsung. HTC. Motorola. Nokia. RIM. ZTE. Huawei. Oppo. You get the point. The mobile phone market moves really quickly. Handsets have a 12-24 month life in the market and opening tools for plastics is expensive and risky.

While it's clear that Apple iPhone and Samsung Galaxy SIII are safe to support, polarisation feels like a recent development in the smartphone space. We want to be conservative with regard to supporting new handsets but balance this against not missing important opportunities.

As well as financing the first production run, we are really eager to solicit feedback during the Kickstarter campaign so that we can get a sense for facets of the market from interested potential users.

3. App Support
We're a product design and manufacturing venture. Software is a very different animal. We would prefer to collaborate with app developers and you have to kiss a lot of frogs before you can successfully join a hardware/firmware initiative with an independent software one. We will come to market with a photography app but we are really focussed on working with successful app developers to build support for our hardware into their apps.

If you've read this far, we truly appreciate your attention and hope that you like what you've seen.

Lee & Rex
Cooltopia - a world of cool products

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter


  • We're gearing up if we successfully achieve our funding goal to offer iPhone 4, iPhone 5 and Samsung Galaxy S3. We'll shortly put our 3D designs of the case variations at - right now we can't show them here as 3D renderings are prohibited in this Kickstarter category, hence this campaign shows photos of our real, working iPhone 4 prototype. Timing is looking promising to deliver all three handsets during the February production and we will contact project backers once the campaign has closed to verify the handset variant required.

    Last updated:
  • There's an internal rechargeable Li-Ion battery in the controller that's charged using a regular micro USB cable.

    Last updated:
  • As I'm based in the UK, the project is denominated in British Pounds GBP. We'd have loved to run this in USD but unfortunately without a US driving license, it's not possible.

    1 GBP is around 1.5-1.6 USD. Consequently...

    MSRP of snappgrip will be: $99

    The pledge levels are:

    £19GBP (approx $30 USD) - limited 100x quantity

    $29GBP (approx $45 USD) - limited 500x quantity

    £49GBP (approx $75 USD) - unlimited quantity - around 30% discount from the planned MSRP

    £69GBP (approx $99 USD) - unlimited quantity - full accessory package included

    £199GBP (approx $299 USD) - limited edition 50x quantity

    Last updated:
  • Free.

    As we're experienced in consumer electronics we've good relationships with various distributors and logistics providers. Accordingly we're already set up for warehousing and distribution in Europe, USA an Asia for this project assuming that it's funded and we can enter production. As a result, we will ship the first production run to the nearest fulfilment centre that we plan to use per continent and accordingly on this campaign we can offer free shipping wherever you are!

    Last updated:
  • Yes! The final prototypes (we'll be posting images in an update really shortly) have a wriststrap connection point.

    Last updated:


  • You selected
    Pledge £1 or more

    6 backers

    Thank you for supporting snappgrip. We'll keep you updated on the project's progress as we head towards production.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge £5 or more

    8 backers

    The snappgrip case for iPhone 4, iPhone 5 or Samsung Galaxy S3. Perhaps you'd rather wait until we're in the market but you'd like to stay connected to the project and you need a phone case. This reward is just for you and rest assured, that once we're in production you'll be able to purchase the snappgrip controller too!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge £10 or more

    1 backer

    A snappgrip-branded mohzy loop USB/micro-USB cable with Apple 30-pin adaptor. We are offering these as part of the snappgrip accessory package as they've got great design and functions. Here's an opportunity to show your support for our project (thank you!) and get a great accessory for your phone or camera at the same time.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge £19 or more

    100 backers All gone!

    If you're one of the first 100 backers for snappgrip and you're quick off the mark, you'll be the owner of a complete snappgrip package including the case and controller at an amazing never-to-be-repeated price!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge £20 or more

    10 backers Limited (590 left of 600)

    We're setting a stretch goal of £30k by the end of the project. To see if we can achieve that we've put together a new £20 pledge level aimed at the 500+ existing backers. It's an accessory package comprising:

    - controller carry pouch
    - snappgrip-branded mini tripod
    - snappgrip-branded Mohzy loop micro USB cable

    This was a great suggestion from one of our backers (thanks!) and let's see what happens between now and Monday.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge £29 or more

    377 backers Limited (123 left of 500)

    A special snappgrip price for the next 500 backers of our project. Thank you for your interest and support. You're a true early adopter of snappgrip and will receive a complete package including the phone case and controller.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge £49 or more

    5 backers

    The standard package. The snappgrip case and controller at 30% less than our planned retail price! We really hope you enjoy your snappgrip.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge £69 or more

    41 backers

    The full monty! For the retail price of snappgrip, you'll receive the case, camera controller, mini-tripod, mohzy loop usb cable and a controller carry pouch for the full snappgrip experience and a saving of £30 over buying separately.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge £199 or more

    7 backers Limited (43 left of 50)

    Inspired by camera manufacturers' limited edition models, to mark snappgrip's debut on KickStarter, we are planning a 50-unit limited run of gold-plated and brown leather snappgrip controllers. Each unit will be sequentially numbered, carry a certificate of authenticity signed by Lee & Rex and delivered in a commemorative box. We undertake that this production will be a one-off limited edition and you'll be one of a handful of owners of something very unique.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world

Funding period

- (39 days)