CES 2014: Flir One case brings true thermal imaging to your iPhone 5/5s

Flir One (iPhone, back, perspective 001)

Avid iPhone photography fans are always on the lookout for new ways of improving their snaps and photography skills to give their work an added edge.

Pitched as the world’s first private thermal imager, the Flir One case slides right onto your iPhone 5 and lets you “see the heat wherever you go”.

It slides onto your iPhone like an ordinary protective case and displays the infrared world on its screen.

We’re talking true thermal imaging here, not the kinds of fake infrared effects you see in many photography apps on the App Store…

The infrared spectrum has a longer wavelength than visible light and the human eyes cannot see it. Like sophisticated security cameras, the Flir One case translates this invisible heat energy into dynamic images.

Since all living beings emit heat, the case sees these heat signatures and tiny differences in temperature in complete darkness, allowing for interesting uses.

Flir One (moisture detection)Flir One (energy efficiency)
Example uses: moisture detection (left) and energy efficiency (right).

The companion Flir One MX app can provide handy temperature readings, save your captured shots to iOS Camera roll and share them on social media channels.

You’ll be able to apply various effects (B/W, W/B, Rainbow, Contrast, Arctic, Hot/Cold and Iron), add visible spectrum detail to thermal images, get an at-a-glance overview of the case’s battery level and more.

One caveat: shiny materials won’t play nice with the Flir One because these surfaces reflect their surroundings rather than generate their own heat signature.

Here’s Flir One in action.


I wonder if that’s Don Draper narrating…

The Flir One includes a rechargeable 1,400mA/h battery that extends your iPhone’s battery life by 50 percent while powering the thermal imager for up to two hours.

The company says consumers can use the case in a variety of ways:

For example, homeowners and contractors with a Flir One can easily identify heat or cooling leaks in buildings, find studs in walls, or locate water damage.

An outdoor enthusiast can observe wildlife, day or night, navigate in the dark, determine if the day’s catch is fully cooked, or make sure a campfire is out by using Flir One.

A family can detect intruders in total darkness, find a lost pet, or see through smoke in an emergency using a Flir One.

I bet folks will find their own creative uses for the case.

A nighttime hide-and-seek, anyone?

Or, how about a thermal scavenger hunt?

The case will be available globally in Spring 2014 “for less than $350” and will come in grey, white or gold, with Flir One for select Andriod models coming later in 2014.

A software development kit to develop Flir One apps will launch later this quarter.

To reserve yours, register your interest at the Flir website.