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Use your Android device as an improvised magnifying glass. If your phone or tablet has a camera – and it almost certainly does – the annoyingly alliterative app named Magnificent Magnifier can use that camera to show you tiny details in the world around you.

Start up the app for the first time and you might see a note, outlining the limitations of your device. In all probability your device does not offer a macro lens, for example, but Magnificent Magnifier is still useful in this case. After this note the app starts working immediately, showing you a zoomed-in version of whatever it is your device’s camera is pointed at.

Here’s me checking out the stitching on my couch:

android magnifying glass

The level of detail is surprising – those are individual threads you’re looking at there, and they took up most of my tablet’s screen. Here’s another one, of the grains of wood on my coffee table:

mmxi.magnifier

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There aren’t many buttons. A slider allows you to zoom out, if necessary. The light bulb at left turns on your camera’s flash as an improvised flashlight, perfect if what you’re looking at is too dark to investigate. The Mona Lisa icon automatically adjusts the focus, and will probably be necessary to use before you can see much of anything. The camera icon is obvious: it takes a picture.

There’s not a lot to complain about here, ugly icons aside, unless advertising really bothers you. There’s no pro version you can buy to remove the ads.

Features

Check out Magnificent Magnifier @ Google Play

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