Want Nokia’s OZO VR Camera? $60K, Please

1 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Nokia Is Betting On VR Making It In Hollywood.

In July, Nokia announced an interesting new direction for the company in the form of the Ozo, a ball-shaped, virtual reality camera aimed at professionals.Initially unveiled in July, OZO is a spherical camera featuring eight sensors and microphones designed to make 3D films and games that can be watched and played with virtual reality (VR) headsets. It records 360 x 180-degree spherical video using eight 2K x 2K image sensors at 30 frames per second (fps) as well as something Nokia calls 360 x 260 surround sound. Nokia is adamant that OZO is the first to bring these kinds of VR features to market, including real-time VR preview, wireless operation and full 3D 360 audio and video broadcast capabilities.

The media module that contains the SSD, together with a power module, form the interchangeable digital cartridge enabling you to record 45 minutes of footage before you have to plug in a new one. There are eight synchronised 2Kx2K sensors for the video sensor array, full spherical 360×180 degrees coverage with a 195-degree angle of view per lens, and full spherical, 360×360 degree audio capture. This wireless design theoretically allows for mounting the Ozo onto a flying drone, as illustrated on Nokia’s official Ozo homepage, though you’ll have to purchase the drone separately.

Though the 360-degree camera space was practically uninhabited a year ago, Nokia is now joining a number of manufacturers who either have or will soon have a similar product, including GoPro, Jaunt, Lytro and Google. We’ve seen a few startups trying their hand at spherical cameras in recent years — such as the likes of Samsung-backed Bublcam, a rather more affordably priced but lower tech option (at circa $800). It’s fair to say that the broadcasting industry is going to need to be creating a steady pipeline of compelling VR content if there’s to be any chance of virtual reality technology transforming from a niche pastime for geeks into a regular mass market entertainment medium. Robert Morlino, a spokesman for Nokia Technologies, said: “If and when we find a world-class partner who can take on those responsibilities, we would work closely with them to guide the design and technology differentiation, as we did with the Nokia N1 Android tablet.” µ The company is drawing on a long history of camera expertise honed during its mobile making years — including a 41MP PureView smartphone camera that caused a splash back in 2012.

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