1. Remotely lock, unlock, alarm and even freakin’ start your car!
Always losing your keys? The Viper SmartKey system allows you to replace your car keys with your phone. When enabled, you can lock and unlock your car (and even disarm an alarm) without even taking your phone out of your pocket.
2. Light up your living room.
Cree’s Connected LED Lightbulb syncs with your phone via an app, turning your device into a dimmer you don’t have to install. What’s more, you can set the amount of time the light stays on without even being in the room, saving you money throughout the year.
3. Monitor your heart rate.
You don’t need to invest in a Jawbone or a Fitbit to monitor your heart rate. All you have to do is download and fire up the Instant Heart Rate app, place your fingertip over your phone’s camera lens for 10 seconds and voila… You’ll get a detailed report right on your screen!
4. Project a cool augmented reality map on the windscreen of your car!
If you’re driving in the dark, the rain, fog, or just unfamiliar conditions, download Hudway, enter your destination and put your phone on your dashboard. Your phone will project a GPS-enabled map on your windshield without the need for any extra equipment required.
5. Double up as a handy leveling tool.
There are tons of free bubble level apps on both iOS and Android that can help you in hanging pictures and aligning shelves with utmost accuracy.
6. Measure height, distance and width using your camera’s lens.
Tired of pinching yourself on tape measures? Interested in measuring really tall things? There are several apps that can measure practically anything for you through your its camera lens!
7. Check whether your remote’s batteries are dead when it stops working.
Your smartphone’s camera is indeed sensitive to IR radiation, and if you want to try it for yourself, just use a common IR remote control. The infrared beam emitted when a button is pressed will show as white or purple light in the viewfinder of your camera app. You can use this trick to check if a remote control’s batteries are dead when it stops working.
8. Work as a sci-fi thermal camera.
Seek Thermal gives you the thermal technology that was once only available for the military and other professionals. It’s a tiny camera that attaches to your smartphone so you can get a thermal image of anything around you, showing you a temperature snapshot of your environment.
9. Work as a DIY microscope.
Amazingly, it just takes a drop of clean water on the camera lens to turn a smartphone into a DIY amateur microscope. The drop of water, which naturally adopts a round shape, acts as a lens, allowing the camera to focus from a distance of under half an inch.
10. Accept credit/debit card payments!
Square Register is a revolution that’s disrupting the current old, static transaction system. It takes the advantage of the smartphone’s mobility to let you accept any credit card payment anytime, anywhere. The buyer signs on the smartphone to authorize payment and avoid potential fraud.
11. Reverse search images and photographs.
If you’re using an Android device, the Google Goggles app lets you search an image captured with your phone’s camera. You can identify famous paintings, find information on products or learn more about a historic landmark.
12. And last but not the least, scan and digitize your old negatives.
If you want a quick and dirty way to digitize (or just view) your old film negatives, you can use your camera’s negative effect or take advantage of some of the many specialized apps like the Helmut Film Scanner.