Back in February Samsung introduced its brand new 360 degree camera, Gear 360. The device captured the attention of the VR industry, but left us wanting more details. Now we have them.
Gear 360 is going on sale in selected countries on April 29th. More countries are expected to be announced in the near future. That news was announced on-stage at the Samsung Developer Conference in San Francisco, California.
For those that don’t know, Gear 360 consists of two F/2.0 fish-eye lenses that both film in 195 degrees, allowing the image to overlap when stitched together, making that effect appear less obvious. Both record in 3840×1920 in a 2D MP4 format. As for the device itself, it weighs just 153 grams (5.39 ounces), and can capture up to seven hours of content thanks to a 128GB microSD card. It’s compatible with Samsung’s latest flagship smartphones, the Galaxy S7 and S7 edge, and of course can be used with its mobile VR HMD, Gear VR.
360 degree content has made up a huge part of Samsung’s push for VR. While Gear VR co-creator Oculus has provided plenty of games for the device, the Korean electronics giant continues to emphasise its Milk VR app, which features a wide range of VR videos. Samsung has even partnered with companies such as Skybound Entertainment to create exclusive content such as the GONE mini-series. The company is now introducing a new Upload SDK for the kit for easy uploading from any 360 camera. With Gear 360 available, you can expect this platform to see a surge of even more content in the future, as well as the likes of 360 compatible services such as YouTube and Facebook.
Gear 360 isn’t Samsung’s only panoramic camera, however. While the small sensor is targeted towards a consumer market, the company is also working on a professional grade rig named Project Beyond. The advanced kit consists of 16 degree cameras that capture content in 3D. Details on the camera’s release are yet to be revealed.