Over the past year, the best iPhone tripods have found a new purpose. While they've always been great for holding your smartphone while snapping pictures or video, they're now a must-have accessory when using your phone as a webcam.
A good iPhone tripod will let you prop your smartphone up at the ideal height and angle for those hours-long videoconference calls with coworkers and family members.
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Of course, an iPhone tripod is also a key piece of equipment when shooting photos or video, especially in low-light situations. Many iPhone tripods have flexible legs, which let you attach your phone to a branch, pole, or some other object so you can get the perfect shot.
What are the best iPhone tripods?
We think the best iPhone tripod — the tripod that will benefit the most iPhone owners in the most situations — is the Joby Griptight One Mount & GP stand. This small stand has firm but flexible legs, which let you use it as a traditional tripod, but can also wrap around object such as tree limbs, posts, and railings. Plus, the Joby Griptight has optional magnets in its feet, which lets you secure it firmly to metal objects.
If you need something even taller, we recommend the Ravelli APTL3 53-inch Lightweight Aluminum Tripod. It can extend up to 53 inches (larger models are available), but weighs just under two pounds. It comes with a pan/tilt head, a carry bag, and a universal smartphone mount, so even if you switch to an Android phone, you'll still be covered.
The best iPhone tripods you can buy today
To paraphrase the old saying about cameras, the best tripod is the one that you have with you. Our top pick can go with you anywhere. The Griptight One Mount & GP stand weighs very little and folds down to fit into the same small bag or pocket where you keep your phone. The GripTight can hold even large phones like the iPhone XS tightly, while the flexible legs are equally at home sitting on a flat surface or wrapping around a tree branch. That makes this stand more flexible for taking interesting shots at home and abroad without weighing you down.
When extended, the tripod can hold your phone just over 6 inches high, and the legs are rigid enough that you can hold onto them and use the tripod as a hand-held camera mount. Now, this is one of the more expensive models out there, but its flexibility and features make this tripod worth the price. If you want even more flexibility, consider adding the $18.99 magnetic tripod, which can cling to metal objects thanks to powerful magnets in the feet.
The standard extending-leg tripod is a go-to gadget for photographers for a reason: It is damn useful. So, don't rule out a small, compact standard tripod as an accessory for your iPhone. This Ravelli model is fairly cheap, folds down into a compact package and includes the mount that holds your iPhone in place.
Unlike most other tripods in this article, the Ravelli Mini also includes a pan arm, which lets you smoothly pan and tilt the phone on the rotating ball head. That's a feature you will see on bigger, more professional tripods for a reason: It looks much better when you can pan around on a tripod and get smooth, steady video rather than turn your whole body and get jerky, bouncy video while holding the phone in your hand.
This tripod can also hold your phone much higher than its miniature cousins can, up to 53 inches off the ground. Again, that makes for more natural-looking videos. Of course, the price you pay for this flexibility is the size. This tripod folds down to be 18 inches long. It does come with a handy carrying case, though, and weighs less than 2 pounds. So, it might be a good pick for a trip on which taking better quality videos is a priority.
If you want a tripod and mount that can take your iPhone to new places, look into the $99 Joby GripTight Pro Telepod, our step-up pick. This is a more conventional, rigid-legged minitripod with features that more-serious photographers will appreciate. It can extend to hold the phone up to just under 14 inches high, so you get more control over how you frame your shot.
The GripTight Pro TelePod folds down into a compact package that is just over 7 inches tall, though, and can double as a hand-held camera mount. Extend the column of the tripod while it is folded up, and it holds the phone farther away, for more-flattering video. Combine this with the Bluetooth remote on one of the legs, and you've got a fully actualized selfie stick.
In addition to holding the phone itself, the TelePod has a small shoe mount, which is great for night shots when combined with a miniature light like a Lume Cube. Alternatively, this can hold a directional microphone for better audio.
Manfrotto is known for its expensive professional tripods, but the Pixi brings many of the features from those tripods to your smartphone. The Pixi has the same stainless-steel construction and matte-black finish as its higher-end cousins. A soft rubber grip in the clamp holds your phone in place without scratching it, and the low, wide orientation of the Pixi keeps the phone from tipping over. You can tilt the phone forward and back, but the phone can be held only in landscape mode.
The Pixi minitripod is affordable and folds down into a relatively small package. When the three legs are folded together, they can also be used as a hand grip for those travelogue shots.
The Xenvo SquidGrip looks like an ordinary miniature tripod until you grab one of the legs and bend it. Covered with smooth plastic, the thin legs look like those of any of hundreds of minitripods, but they are made of a flexible plastic that can be bent and reshaped with ease. The phone mount also includes a ball head that you can use to rotate and tilt the phone to find just the right angle. You do have to be careful to make sure that the phone mount is tight enough to hold onto the phone, though.
The combination isn't cheap; at $29.99, this is one of the more expensive tripods that we evaluated. But you do get a lot for the money; the neo-plastic coating of the legs and the metal phone mount are far more robust than what you find on many cheaper models.
The Shoulderpod S2 takes a rather different approach than most tripods and mounts. For one thing, it isn't really a tripod. Moment describes the S2 as a handle grip. With its one leg, you can use it in much the same way that you would use a minitripod, though, holding it in your hand, sitting it on a flat surface or attaching it to a tripod for more-flexible mounting.
The wooden handle makes for a more comfortable and steady grip on the phone, and the included strap means your phone won't go flying off if you run headfirst into a tree. The counterweight of this grip makes it sit evenly on a flat surface, so you can plonk it down and narrate your latest adventure in either landscape or portrait orientation.
If you unscrew the wooden handle, you'll find a standard tripod socket that can screw onto most any tripod, including flexible ones like the Joby GorillaPod. This accessory is a bit expensive, but those who prefer hand-held shots to static ones may like the different approach to holding the phone.
The name may sound a bit silly, but this combination of tripod and mount is all business. The Jelly Grip is a small, compact mount that uses springs to hold your phone tightly and that can be rotated to either portrait or landscape mode. The Jelly Long Legs is, well, a tripod with long legs. Despite the wibbly, wobbly name, the legs are solid metal, with wide spacing that makes for a solid, stable mount, even with a heavy phone placed on rough surfaces.
Some tripods may tip over with a large, heavy phone on them, but the wide, low legs of the Jelly Long Legs keep it from falling and getting your expensive phone scratched. This combination is well priced and provides a simple, stable base for selfies or Instagram videos.
As the name suggests, the Eocean is a combination of selfie stick and tripod. When you unfold the legs, you get a pretty standard miniature tripod with three wide legs that keep the phone well balanced. When you extend the column of the tripod and fold the legs back, you get the selfie-stick mode.
The phone grip at the top of the column has a ball head that you can use to tilt and rotate the phone, so you can point the phone's camera in pretty much any direction, then use the clamp to hold it in place. It is possible to use the Eocean as a taller tripod by folding the legs out with the column extended, but be careful; it is top-heavy and rather prone to tipping over. With 45 inches of extension, that's a long way for your iPhone to fall. Also included is a small Bluetooth remote that attaches to one of the legs. This allows you to take photos or stop and start video recording without touching the phone itself.
How to choose the best iPhone tripod for you
When shopping for an iPhone tripod — really, any smartphone tripod — think about how you're going to use it. If you're looking for something that'll let you take nice vacation photos, you'll want a small, compact tripod that you can stash easily in a bag, and won't take up much space.
If you're one of those people, and insist on inserting yourself into every shot, then we suggest an iPhone tripod that can also convert and extend into a selfie stick. Just be cool about it, ok?
Want to take photos from unusual angles, or from uneven surfaces? Then it's probably best to get an iPhone tripod with flexible legs, so you can wrap it around a tree, or rest it on a rock, or hang it upside down from somewhere. You're only limited by your imagination.