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Olloclip's new clasp fits fancy lenses to any smartphone

We did have trouble getting it around a OnePlus 6, though.

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Olloclip first started making special camera lenses for smartphones seven years ago, and an initial kit for the iPhone 4 snowballed into a whole business. Many new lenses and photography accessories have followed, typically in tandem with a new iPhone. But even when Olloclip ventured outside the Apple bubble, its products have always been device-specific. That changes with the newly announced and catchily named "Multi-Device Clip," which on its own is a simple mount you can clasp around any phone, Apple or otherwise. It's into this mount that you insert any of the company's "Connect X" lenses, originally developed specifically for the iPhone X.

Because it's basically just a spring-loaded plastic clamp with rubbery pads to provide grip (and avoid scratches), the clip can position a lens over the rear- or front-facing camera. Similarly, it'll work with any phone or tablet and will fit over any case as long as the total thickness is 12mm (around half an inch) or less. That's how it's supposed to work, anyway, but we had trouble fitting a lens snugly over the OnePlus 6's rear camera, because there's isn't quite enough depth to the clip. Still, if your phone is your go-to camera and you don't have something fancy like a Huawei P20 Pro, this should let you up your Instagame without switching devices entirely.

When it launches in a few weeks' time, the clip will be available for $60 in a set with an iPhone X lens of your choice -- a veritable bargain considering that these lenses sell for between $60 and $80 apiece. Anyone with an existing collection is also welcome to buy the clip on its own for $45, which sounds a little pricey by comparison, considering its plastic construction.

The Olloclip team is showing off its latest creation at the Showstoppers event here at IFA, though they were keen to stress it was a batch-one prototype that doesn't look or feel quite like the final, polished product. It still works as described, though, and offers a glimpse at what's in the cards for the company. In the near future, the plan is to follow the clip with a collection of compatible entry-level and high-end lenses, so there's something for every device and every budget.

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