Blips lenses: how to turn your smartphone into a microscope

The microscope was an unprecedented invention. It allows us to see where our eyes cannot reach. But if so far it seemed like a tool intended only for research laboratories, know that you will be able to peer into the microscopic world through an object you use every day: with SMO's Blips lenses you can transform your smartphone into a microscope. Let's see how.

Set of mini blips lenses to transform your smartphone into a microscope

Smart Micro Optics (SMO) is a spin-off of the Italian Institute of Technology (IIT) which in 2015 entrusted the launch of the project to the most famous crowfunding platform: Kickstarter. Initially the project required € 15,000 but soon reached nearly 300,000. How was all this possible? No doubt thanks to their lenses, the thinnest in the world for portable microscopy, usable on any model of smartphone and tablet.

"Our MISSION is to provide anyone with the tools to explore the micro-world, through a family of innovative products, affordable for all and highly portable, in the fields of microscopy, consumer electronics and micro-optics"

With SMO's Blips lenses you can turn your smartphone into a microscope
Kit of mini-lenses Blips and a Blips Macro applied on the camera of an iPhone. Credit: SMS

The blips set contains four mini-lenses placed on a flexible film that adhere perfectly to the smartphone lens without damaging it . Just place the lens on the device's camera well aligned and once removed it will not leave any residue as it does not use any type of glue for adhesion but an electrostatic material. The Blips mini-lens kit to turn your smartphone into a microscope consists of:

  • Blips macro plus
  • Macro blips
  • Micro blips
  • Ultra blips
With SMO's Blips lenses you can turn your smartphone into a microscope
Microscopic photography. Credits: SMO

These lenses have high optical performance that will allow you to take the best photographs in the microworld. This, together with their portability, the great ease of use and the advantageous price, make these mini-lenses the optimal choice for those who want to approach portable microscopy.

Blips Macro Plus

Blips Macro Plus. Credits: SMO

Thanks to this lens, small insects, flowers and objects in general will be seen in all their splendor. The Blips Macro Plus allows you to take high definition macro photographs, thanks to the optical magnification of about 5 times . It has a focal length of around 20mm and is less than 1mm thin. You can buy the blips macro plus for only 7.45 euros.

Macro blips

Macro blips. Credits: SMO

For even smaller objects comes Blips Macro with a magnification of about 10 times . Even Blips Macro like its Macro Plus sister is about 1mm thin and very easy to use. In this case, the focal distance is about 12 mm and can be used to look closely at insects or spiders, control of pests on plant leaves as well as for the control of precision work. The single lens can be purchased on the OMS website at a price of 14.90 euros.

Micro blips

With SMO's Blips lenses you can turn your smartphone into a microscope
Micro Blips. Credits: SMO

If you are interested in the microscopic world, Blips Micro is the lens for you. Thanks to the focal distance of 5-6 mm it is possible to recognize details up to 4.5 microns when used to observe objects in transmitted light , as highlighted on the SMO website. In fact, blips micro is part of the Full Kit and all Bllips LabKits. These kits contain everything you need to make the most of the blips lens, such as the light source and prepared microscopy slides. This lens can also be found on the SMO website at a price of 14.90 euros.

Ultra Blips

With SMO's Blips lenses you can turn your smartphone into a microscope
Ultra Blips. Credits: SMO

With Blips Ultra our smartphone will become a real microscope . The details in this case can be seen up to 3.5 microns so it will allow you to fully enter the microscopic world. It will also be possible to reach a magnification of 150 times under particular conditions. Both Blips Micron and Ultra will need support and special precautions during their use. Unlike Macros which are very easy to use. Like the Blips Macro and Micro, the Blips Ultra can be yours for the price of 14.90 euros.

Blips lenses: turn your smartphone into a microscope with Blips LabKit 2

As we mentioned before, for optimal use of the lenses it will be possible to buy them in different kits . iI LabKit 2 is the second generation of Blips LabKits and is a very convenient way to have the best of SMO at your fingertips. Inside the kit you will find a Macro Lens Kit, that is, a small package with a Macro lens (10x) and a Macro Plus lens (20x) and a Micro Lens Kit, containing a Micro lens (20x) and an Ultra lens ( 33x). There is also a small torch, a smartphone and table holder with screw adjustment and 3 prepared and 2 neutral slides. This kit is not currently available on the SMO website.

Blips New LabKit 2

With SMO's Blips lenses you can turn your smartphone into a microscope
Blips Labkit 2. credits. SMO

The Blips Labkit 2 is the latest generation of the Blips Labkit and contains all four lenses with 10 spare adhesives in addition to the slides (3 prepared and 2 neutral), a light source and an improved smartphone and tablet holder compared to the version previous one. With blips lenses turn your smartphone into a microscope and feel like a real scientist while observing cells and small details or use it during your work to check finishes or take wonderful photographs. The price is accessible to everyone and is around 50 euros.

Blips lenses: transform your smartphone into a microscope with the dedicated app

In addition to all the possibilities offered by these lenses, you can have all your works in one place: the dedicated SMO app. Thanks to a user friendly interface you can take and share your creations directly from the app as well as have the LED control for use in the dark and the ability to block the fire. The app is available for free on both the App Store and Google Play and is safe and multi-device.

Standard blips vs metal blips

The latest lenses of the Standard version are available on the SMO website , i.e. those with the support entirely of plastic. SMO is in fact ready to leave behind this type of support to switch completely to the Metal version. The latter features a metal core with the addition of two aluminum strips on the sides of the lens which facilitates the maintenance of the bend when the lens is used on smartphones with the camera positioned at an angle .

So whether you want them for yourself, for your work or as a gift for a loved one, Blips mini-lenses are the best in portable microscopy on the market. This product is safe, made in Italy, innovative, but above all, it is within everyone's reach : use it with children, for your work or to take photographs, you will always get satisfactory results.

The article Blips lenses: how to turn your smartphone into a microscope comes from Tech CuE .