Now you can, with the Micro Phone 150x, a tiny accessory for your smartphone and tablet that launched as a KickStarter project and has raised over twice its initial funding goal of $50,000.
The lens sticks to a device’s camera without any adhesive or glue making it possible to see things magnified on a screen to a resolution of 150x. (Standard laboratory microscopes typically magnify anywhere from 50 t0 400 times).
As a writer for Forbes notes, there are other products already out there that can adapt a smartphone or tablet to be used as a microscope.
“However, most of them seem to be either DIY hacks, clever but unfit for professional use, or are significantly more expensive,” said Federico Guerrini.
The Micro Phone Lens is relatively inexpensive at $42, which includes a flexible lamp and some slides.
Further, the product's creator, Thomas Larson, says on his KickStarter page that he was able to use an "ultra-compact design" to create the Micro Phone Lens using patent pending platinum catalyzed silicone technology.
(Tablet productivity, how tablets are becoming more than consumption devices able to do real work and even replace laptops in some cases, will be among the topics covered at the Tablet Strategy conference in New York on May 6, 2014)