After having mentioned Mr Tappy in a previous post, I dug a little deeper into the tool and decided to purchase one. I am glad I did!
With Mr Tappy being a product from the land of the Kiwis… well, mainly sheep, New Zeeland, it was going to take a week or so for Mr Tappy to arrive. Now that I have gotten my hands on one, I am not sure if I want to send it back…
Nick Bowmast a.k.a. Mr Tappy
And so I met Nick, a User Experience professional from New Zeeland and the brains behind Mr Tappy. With Mr Tappy he was not only solving a problem for himself, but also for others. With usability testing of mobile devices there are some problems we run into.
Applications, especially on iOS devices will not allow you to perform screen recordings outside of the app itself. Like I demonstrated last week UX Recorder is a good example of an app that will allow you to perform mobile website tests on any iOS device. If you are set on testing apps by means of recording the screen on the device the only option is to jailbreak your iOS device and install Screen Recorder.
Now, even though Mr Tappy is merely a rig, it will allow you to everything you want as far as testing is concerned, taking into consideration, of course, that you will need a webcam connected to a computer to record any test session you do.
In other words, Mr Tappy is the mobile usability test rig that takes away any constraints, and in combination with an iPhone and a Glif, you can become truly mobile. Take it anywhere you want and test any mobile device you want.
Mr Tappy meets Glif
Last year when surfing around Kickstarter, I came across Glif. Glif is a holder for an iPhone 4/4s with which you can attach it to any tripod mount.
The grip is so tight that it can even hold the iPhone in a horizontal position. I have been told, that the latest version of the Glif comes with an extra bracket for improved horizontal and vertical (upside down in this case) grip.
It was the Glif, in combination with a Mr Tappy, that made my mobile usability testing grip complete. It defies the need for an external computer or any kind which would record the video and audio of the test.
The iPhone, in my case, was my all-in-one recording station. It makes your Mr Tappy rig 100% wireless!
MrTappy in action… well, kind of…
Although you don’t really see Mr Tappy when recording, it does form the foundation of the recording itself. The rig is designed to stick to the back of your mobile device by means of velcro. The webcam is then placed at the top of the rig overlooking the mobile device you want to test. This is the kind of results you can get.
Equipment used: Mr Tappy (large base), Glif, iPhone 4 (Camera app set for video), and an iPad 2
What do you get when you buy Mr Tappy?
Like I mentioned before, Mr Tappy is a complete mobile usability testing rig. All you need to take care of yourself is a webcam and external computer with recording software, or use an iPhone with a Glif. Other than that, here’s what you get:
- Large base for tablets or other size devices.
- Small base for phones and small devices.
- Three stackable arms – use one, two or three.
- Hand tighten-able nuts – no tools required.
- Camera head with mounting screw and washers.
- Cable ties for attaching your camera.
- Reusable Velcro cable tidies.
- Self adhesive Velcro for attaching devices.
With a $295 price tag, which includes global shipping,
you might consider the mobile usability testing rig to be a little overpriced, but since testing it, I know that it is well worth the price. The entire Mr Tappy rig is collapsible into 1 small pouch and it is ready to go at a moments notice.
Using the Mr Tappy & Glif combination is one way to get even more value out of the rig, letting you perform mobile usability tests virtually everywhere, even in the airplane at 30.000 feet.
If you are serious about testing, either the company you work for or you personally, Mr Tappy is the rig to have.
…make sure to check out Glif too