Outdoor Gear Reviews

MantisX – Review by Chuck Granade

My shooting accuracy is average. I grew up in a family mostly void of guns and live in a city that would love to confiscate them. I put too many hours in at the office and despite enjoying shooting, the hours I keep with my company limits range time.

So, when Kevin asked me to demo a shooting training tool w/ a mobile companion, he knew it combined a few passions of mine; design & technology. My company, CRRNT is focused on creating solutions using a mix of technology and design, so a mobile app sounded cool! Ok, I admit it, I’m a geek.

I had a bit of skepticism at the notion a mobile tool could be a valuable, dual-purpose dry practice and live fire training tool. Not anymore.

Out of the box experience (OOBE)

The first thing I noticed when opening the inner shell packaging is exactly what I wanted to know; a few easy steps to started. The product device itself is neatly tucked into a zipped case along with the USB charger.

I mounted the Mantis tech on my regular carry – XDM-40, 3.5”. The packaging is well organized with good quality stock and overall easy to understand instructions.

The branding – and specifically, logo mark is interesting. I love the creativity incorporated into a brand mark entirely unique to Mantis and the visualized data the mobile app captures. There are opportunities to tighten the use of typography, colors, and alignment of the instructions printed on the exterior.

The Mobile App – Setup, UI –

The overall setup is a straight forward download for your Apple or Google mobile device. The UI is logically organized into four main sections available on the bottom tray; Train, History, Groups, and Settings.

The like the possibility of what Groups seemed to promise but instead it feels like the old chat room concept of the early web era. To be fair, it could be a feature partially deployed. The promise of partnering up with another person for a practice session is really interesting in a gamified, campaign sort of way.

One way to promote deeper engagement with the app is to be able to rank up, challenge other community members for dry practice & live fire sessions. The app could geo-locate but suspect users would benefit from a few campaigns to promote the added feature.

Would I recommend Mantis X to others?

Yes, I would – and already have. In fact, I’ve even incorporated it into a recent pitch to improve an outfitter lodge & hunting experience. So yeah, I like it and have a hunch you will too.

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