Swivl provides a “hook” for presenting captivating videos. The hook is that the Swivl base tracks its remote (that you carry about or wear on a lanyard) and thereby your video recording device follows you about, as if you had a “personal cameraman”. The current Swivl base has a very smooth tracking motion.
I think the subliminal message is that either I, or what I am saying is important enough for the camera to follow me, and if the camera is following me, the audience should be attentive to what I am saying or to what I am showing them.
The other Swivl feature that makes your videos more captivating is that the remote also captures your audio very well. You could record your audio remotely, and then use video editing software to combine silent video with the matching recorded audio, but Swivl saves you that time and effort.
I’m not sure the current price of the Swivl base & remote (approx. $300) can be justified by most individuals. However, in an educational environment the device could be shared amongst instructors or teachers in a department. On sharing equipment: The current Swivl base and remote appear to be well constructed. That said, there are several other plastic pieces that could be easily broken or lost = the plastic remote holder that is hung from a lanyard, the 3 different sized shems that hold various video capture devices, the audio cable that attaches the video capture device and the Swivl base.
Don’t equate Swivl with the flipped classroom. For that matter, don’t equate video lectures with the flipped classroom.
I think the Swivl might be useful in recording student teachers who are walking about the classroom during the teaching process. You could track the instructor’s movements and have very good audio. But, I am not sure how well the Swivl would track the teacher if the “little” or big heads/bodies of their students block the tracking device. Put the Swivl & video recording device high on a tripod so that “line of sight” room obstacles are few.
NOTE: I gave a Swivl presentation to two groups of faculty during the Bronco Kick-Off (start of the Fall Semester 2014). I could not have planned for a better illustration than what Professor Denise Payton provided on the fly.