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Over the years, I've been sent more gadgets for review than I care to admit. At best, I'd say maybe 50% of those devices delivered as promised, while maybe 25% of them really impressed me. Because of that, when I was sent yet another device that promised to make creating video content much easier, I was skeptical.
The device in question is called the Pivo Pod Active, which sells for $139.99. What is the Pivo Pod Active? It's an AI-powered device that uses either an Android or iOS app to track and follow your face (or body, depending on how you set it up) while you create video content.
I've been skeptical about such devices because I've experienced a number of them that really failed to deliver. Either the device was too bulky to use, the AI didn't function as expected, or it was just an all-around failure.
The Pivo Pod Active is none of those things. I've never experienced such a product that was not only this easy to use, but this accurate. It's actually scary good how well this device follows your movement. Even better, for those that don't want to install the app on their phone, the Pivo Pod Active comes with a small remote that allows you to control the movement and speed of the device.
Built-in rechargeable battery for the base and two CR1632 batteries for the remote (included).
How Pivo Pod works
How the Pivo Pod works depends on how you plan on using it. For example, if you use it without the app, you simply attach your phone to the device, turn on both the Pivo Pod Active base, and then turn on the remote. Once they sync (which happens almost immediately), you can use the remote to move the Pod from right to left as you move while recording. The remote buttons allow you to:
Speed up the rotation by pressing the up button.
Slow down the rotation by pressing the down button.
Turn right by pressing the right button.
Turn left by pressing the left button.
Constant clockwise spinning by pressing the double right-pointing arrows.
Constant counter-clockwise spinning by pressing the double left-pointing arrows.
For those that don't want to have to use a remote, install the free app (for Android or iOS). Instead of using your Android or iOS camera app, you open the Pivo+ app, allow it to connect to the base, let it find your face, and start recording. The Pivo Pod Active will automatically follow you as you move left and right (or in a complete circle around the device).
As I've said, the Pivo Pod Active far outperformed my expectations. In fact, this little device is as close to true "plug and play" as I've ever seen from such a piece of technology. Within a couple of minutes from the unboxing, I had the Pivo Pod Active up and running with the app installed, and AI keeping track of me as I created content. It really is that impressive.
Who is the ideal Pivo Pod user?
If you're a content creator, use your phone to record that content, would like a bit more freedom to move about as you film, and want something incredibly simple to set up and use, the Pivo Pod Active might be the perfect piece of equipment.
The only downside to the Pivo Pod Active is that it is only usable with a phone. So, if you use a DSLR, a GoPro, or a cinema-level camera, you're out of luck. Not only does the Pivo Pod Active not have the ability to hold those devices, but it also might not have the horsepower to turn a heavier camera.
But if your phone is your go-to for content, the Pivo Pod Active would be an absolutely brilliant addition to your tool kit. The auto-tracking and auto-zooming are both spot on, and the hands-free movement you gain for your content is so freeing.
Give the Pivo Pod Active a try, and see if it doesn't help take your content creation to the next level.