There are a lot of phone cradles out there that let you mount your smartphone on a tripod or selfie stick. But nearly all of those use a traditional 1/4-20 tripod screw mount. What there hasn’t been is a way to mount a smartphone directly with all those GoPro mounting accessories you’ve been collecting.
You can certainly use the existing smartphone mounts with GoPro accessories. It’s just a matter of using an adapters like these.
The adapters are inexpensive, and using one isn’t really much of a hassle. But there are advantages to being able to skip the adapter. For one, it’s one less piece of the puzzle. For another–and the most important benefit to me–is that the more adapters you use the more weak links there are in keeping everything rock solid. Adapters can have a nasty habit of coming loose when they’re buffeted by movement, and that little bit of give can lead to rotation or slight wobble when you don’t need it or, worse, the phone coming flying off altogether.
GoWorx’s FreeRide phone mount has the GoPro attachment fused to the body. It means you can attach it to GoPro mounts directly, without the need for an adapter. And the GoPro mounts are a much better locking design for contending with the forces involved with mounting a camera on a moving object.
The GoPro attachment aside, this cradle works much like others. The phone slides into what is basically an adjustable clamp. The surfaces that come into contact with the phone are rubberized, which helps with the grip. There’s a lock screw on top that you tightening to lock into place. Once locked and loaded, the phone is securely held in place.
In terms of sizing of the clamp, GoWorx claims that it is compatible with all iPhone and Samsung Galaxy models. It will work with many other smartphones as well. The only real compatibility is one of size. So long as the phone is more than 2.2 inches (56.5mm) and less than 3.4 inches (86.5mm) wide it should fit in.
And if you decide you want to use it with a regular tripod mount, one is helpfully included in the box.
Overall, I’ve found it to work well. I’ve been using it with an iPhone 6, and even with the smooth edges of that phone it has locked firmly in place.
I like being able to use my very large collection of GoPro mounting accessories directly with my iPhone, mounting it on things like bikes handlebars, sleds, and the GoPro Jaws Clamp. But one of my favorite uses for it is for regular handheld use. By attached it to something like a bobber or hand mount you get a much more secure hold in places where dropping the phone is just too easy.
My only quibble with the device is the design of the top locking thumbscrew. It’s too hard to get a good grip for my liking, especially with cold fingers. A more grippy dial would be better, or better yet, why not make it compatible with the GoPro Tool?
The FreeRide started as a KickStarter campaign, which is where I picked mine up. The KickStarter campaign has ended, but you can now pick them up from GoWorx directly.