The VIRB can be activated by a smart phone, however, I cannot see my phone screen in bright sun, so that does not work. There is also a remote control available for the VIRB, with a range of 8-10 ft. This worked when the AirCam was in the hanger, or pulled out side the hanger, but when in the air, (cloudless day) it simply would not work, even holding the remote in my hand and getting it a little closer to the camera. I am assuming the puny signal put out by the remote is overwhelmed by the microwave (or other wavelengths) output of the sun.
I took the lens assembly from an ordinary 9 volt Eveready Lantern (yellow), attached adhesive Velcro around the bulb opening of the lens, and corresponding Velcro about the lower edge of the remote (a disc about 1.5 “ diameter, and 3/8” thick) and it fit nicely in the depth of the lens. (Took the remote out of its supplied bracket to apply the Velcro)
The back side of this lens assembly has a crate like structure, allowing easy handling and making aiming accurate.
I took it on a flight on very sunny day, and IT WORKED.