Samsung’s foray into the hot new virtual reality segment is expected to get some boost now that its Gear 360 camera designed to shoot 360-degree videos and photos is slated to hit stores on April 29, the company announced at its Developer Conference in San Francisco. Initial availability will, however, be limited to South Korea and Singapore with a gradual rollout in other world markets including North America to follow soon thereafter.
No official price has been mentioned though the camera has been found listed at online retailer Adorama for $399.99.
As for its features, the Gear 360 comes with a dual lens setup fitted along the front and rear and are designed to shoot 360-by-180-degree view (almost) 4K quality video. However, that’s just one part of the story as special software come into play thereafter that essentially stitches the two footages together to give rise to a meaningful video.
Further, the Gear 360 is designed to communicate via Wi-Fi and Bluetooth and is compatible with Samsung’s latest flagship smartphones i.e. S7 and S7 Edge. However, it’s not known which other Android smartphones the Gear 360 is compatible with though that is likely to be restricted to the frontline devices at best.
Another nice design element of the Gear 360 is that it features 128 GB microSD storage which allows the user to upload the footage on a PC or other compatible devices as well. The camera also comes with a removable battery, something missing with the latest 7 series. Also, it will be interesting to know if the camera will also be compatible with iOS devices. It comes in a spherical body that is water and dust resistant which makes it perfect for outdoor shooting, even in trying conditions.
The camera can record for 140 minutes with recorded footage fed to the Samsung Milk VR service for viewing on a compatible headset such as the Gear VR.
Other notable developments in the space of VR cameras include the LucidCam VR, which costs around $400. Facebook though has unveiled a more elaborate take on a VR camera at its developer’s conference which features an elaborate 17-camera setup but costs a cool $30,000 to make.