I brought a few Foldscopes to my high school in New Jersey for the students in the Anatomy and Physiology Course to test out, and this is some of the feedback they offered:
Easy to make Cheap Great for research, portable, very useful/convenient Designs were creative It actually works! (my personal favorite)
Not all slides fit easily Sometimes difficult to focus Complicated to make (there was mixed feedback on the level of difficulty) Consider construction with less folds (one student recommended a simpler design without the back piece, and instead, only a single rectangular piece to slide the lens back and forth) Samples are visible but small Flaps get stuck sometimes Difficult for people with glasses Without the LED or good sunlight, it’s not convenient to use
Other comments: Cool! 😀 It is Awesome!
Would have loved to get more comments, but we had a limited amount of time and it wasn’t enough for experimentation. I would recommend for anyone planning to teach to a class with more than 10 people to spread it out over a few class periods or a few days, because it takes time to teach all the folds.
My opinion: The foldscope is perfect for on-the-go scientists. I carry it around in my bag during the day and pull it out whenever I find something interesting. The only issue with that is though the material is very durable, it does bend easily. Not an easy fix to make, but a worthy sacrifice for a tool so useful. The battery for the LED also bothered me a little because it died on me quickly, but joined with the my smartphone flashlight it worked just fine. I do wear glasses, and though I am near-sighted, I imagine for far-sighted people it could be a problem looking in the lens. I also wonder if it would be possible to increase the space between the lens and the sample? All-in-all: probably my favorite microscope ever.