What are 360 video cameras? Why do we need them?
If you are reading this blog, the chances are you are a bit of a gadget freak or techie like myself, now 360° Cameras or 360 videos have slowly been making their way on youtube for quite some time and places like facebook are also embracing them.
360 videos are camera footage that allow you to be the centre of the subject, you can then scroll around anywhere on the video and view it from different angles, if you are using the Youtube app you just have to move the phone in any direction and the camera/video footage automatically moves, believe me the first time you use it you will be blown away with this technology.
In the early days there have been a few ways to create these 360 videos, mainly using multiple cameras such as GoPro and some specially built hardware to hold the cameras, the footage is then stitched together in post processing using various software to complete the marvel.
These cameras are perfect for thrill seekers and action enthusiasts but everyday people are posting videos showing the capabilities of the technology. Virtual Reality filmakers are already embracing the technique with short films displaying quirky ways to capitalise on this future.
Nikon of all people have now decided to get involved in this very optimistic market that is moving forward at an alarming rate, not only is it moving forward at a rate of mega knots 360° Cameras are surprisingly slow to hit the mainstream market and actually hit the hands of the real life end users, the reason for this I believe is because of a product poker game, nobody wants to show their hand and then once they do the next company is frantically busy to trying to produce something that surpasses the status quo so this then leads to companies holding back and so the cycle repeats.
What I absolutely believe will be the latest game changer in the 360° market is the Nikon 360 Keymission Action Camera.
This 360° camera boasts 4K quality (although please bare in mind this does not mean 4K as we know it, it simply means 4K is the overall output of the footage but what we actually view in any one frame will probably be more like 720p)
So far we know it will shoot at resolutions up to 4K UHD, it will be waterproof (down to 100 feet, 30 metres), dustproof, shockproof, and capable of working at very low temperatures. It will also have electronic Vibration Reduction. The camera will be Wi-Fi and Bluetooth enabled with SnapBridge-compatibility, it will easily link up with with a smartphone or tablet.
We don’t know how long the battery will last and most importantly how much the hardware will cost, my guess is that it will likely come in at around £400 but it could easily cost more compared to a others in the market.
The future of the 360° Camera market is very much in its infancy and they need to be embraced by the consumers but with the declining sales announced by GoPro this week there needs to be a resurgence……of what i’m not totally sure, I think many people would agree that GoPro’s are the best cameras for this type of video footage with many competitors coming close, I think the main issue with future sales will ultimately be the price and how quickly the contenders with improve on latest technology.
GoPro Hero 5 is well overdue for release and the new version of this should have significant improvements on its predecessor
GoPro are also due to release it new Karma Drone but it is not yet apparent if it will contain a built in camera or whether it will house its GoPro Hero lineup.