So, the folks at PhoneLabs sent me one of their Starter Kits to play with. This is a set of 3D printed parts along with some skrews and a rod that are designed to assemble into a simple setup for smartphone experiments.
The only thing that you need to add (besides your smartphone) is a ruler. Unfortunately, all rulers I tried were either too wide or too short, so I had to resort to a folding rule, which is not ideal because of the bulky folded part on one side, but still worked quite nicely.
As you can see from the video, I decided to try out our centripetal acceleration experiment and used our remote access to view the data on a laptop PC while rotating the phone. If you don’t know this experiment, here is the video, explaining the setup using a salad spinner:
The advantage of the 3D-printed setup over the salad spinner is, that you can vary the radius of your motion. I simply did the experiment three times in a row for different radii, pausing and resuming my measurement in-between. Here is the result (screenshot from the remote interface) after three repetitions:
You can clearly see and compare the three slopes, following nicely.
By the way, PhoneLabs also offer their own apps. While these do not provide features like remote access, there is something quite unusual and novel about them as you do not need to be installed anything on your phone. In fact, they simply run in your web browser from where they can still access some of your phone’s sensors.