Swivl Robot

The Swivl Robot holds a mobile phone, tablet or SLR camera. It can be sat on a desk or mounted on a tripod. The robot automatically follows the person who is wearing a small tracking device, which is also used to capture the speaker’s voice.

The Robot - image from swivl.com
The Robot – image from swivl.com

Applications
This device is ideal for any situation requiring ‘informal’ recording, possibly set up at short notice! It has been used very successfully to provide recordings of staff teaching by members of the PG CAP course, who were trying it out as part of a pilot of the Teaching Process Recall methodology.

Cost
The robot itself is approx £400.00. You will also need a phone/tablet/camera to record with. Recordings can be uploaded at no cost to the Swivl Cloud (US-based) to get them off your device.

Availability
The LTT have a Swivl Robot if you want to try it out.

Verdict
Too expensive for occasional use, this unit delivers quality audio and video and if used regularly would earn it’s keep.

Things to Watch
The recordings are initially stored on your device, but not in the standard video library. To get them off your device in a format you can edit or upload elsewhere, you need to first upload them to the Swivl Cloud, which is not based in the EU. You can then export the video from the cloud in MP4 format to your computer. Be sure that you are happy/permitted to host the content outside the EU – even temporarily.

Related tools
You might want to consider using the Kaltura streaming service to host your videos – this is easily accessed from within duo.

Contact
More details are available from the vendor’s website:
http://www.swivl.com/

REVIEW DATE: January 2016
PRODUCT: Robot Version 1.4 ; App Version 2.1