Folding Fodi phone stand uses origami techniques to give it great strength

Sometimes even the simplest ideas and products turn out to be surprisingly versatile. The Fodi is more than just a basic stand for your smartphone. It’s super thin and weighs almost nothing, but is strong enough to hold a laptop in place, and mixes origami-inspired techniques with a smart design to make it standout in a pretty crowded space.

The Fodi is just 1mm thick, and weighs 40 grams. When unfolded, it’s not much longer than a paperback book, so it’s easy to slip into a bag or between the screen and keyboard of a closed laptop. While we’ve seen folding stands before, this isn’t a flimsy piece of cardboard that will disintegrate at the first sign of water, or gradually lose its shape and become useless. The polypropylene fiber paper Fodi is made from resists water and stains, and can be wiped clean. The various colorful designs make it look great, and few other stands can claim to have been designed by a real-life, award-winning origami expert.

We’ve been trying out an early version of Fodi for a few days, and we found that it’s incredibly easy to transform it from its convenient flat state to a handy stand. Predefined sections fold naturally into place, so you don’t have to be an origami master to get it right, and magnets hold it in place. There are two main positions, giving two different degrees of screen elevation. It’s large enough to hold an iPhone 7 Plus, so will happily cope with most modern smartphones.

However, the structure itself is incredibly strong, and can hold up to 20 kg, which means not only will it also keep your tablet upright, it will support your laptop, too. If you have a preference for typing on an angled keyboard, the Fodi is a great portable stand to help achieve this on the move. Be aware that the way it angles a laptop may mean its rubber feet aren’t in contact with the desk or table, depending on the model of computer you’re using. However, it did work with our Apple MacBook Air and Huawei MateBook X.

If you think a Fodi would fold itself easily into your life, you can get one through Kickstarter at the moment, where it costs just $14 and comes with a clever magnetic cable holder to keep charging cables neat and tidy. Delivery is expected to take place in October this year.