Let’s break down the history of modern video:
In 1876, we saw the world’s first film camera.
In 1983, Sony introduced the first camcorder.
In the last 15 years, we’ve seen the arrival of digital high definition, 3D video, and the ability to shoot high quality movies right from our phones.
How’s that for perspective? The amount of progress made in the last couple decades is astounding to say the least with major developments in the field every couple years. Samsung is looking to continue that trend with its introduction of the new Samsung Gear 360, an omni-directional camera designed to make virtual reality videos from home.
The Gear 360 uses two fisheye lenses on both sides of the device, with the ability to only use one if need be. Each lens works with a 15 megapixel sensor, meaning that the camera is able to shoot 30 megapixel still shots or 3840×1920 resolution video. At just below 4K, the Gear 360 is near the top of the line in terms of video quality. It is important to understand that 4K in VR is not the same as it is on another video camera. The way that Samsung uses 4K is to describe the spread of pixels around the entire device. That being said, using this definition of 4K, you’re limited to a fraction of the full display at any given time.
The Gear 360 is incredibly easy to operate with a three button setup; a menu button that cycles through shooting modes, a power button, and a record button. Pretty simple, right? One hiccup in the way of usability is that the camera works exclusively with Samsung phones, such as the Galaxy S7 or S7 Edge. Additionally, if you’re a Mac user, you’re out of luck here. The Gear 360’s desktop software is Windows only. While this Windows and Samsung exclusivity can be annoying to Appleheads, it does allow for easy viewing of your VR video and control through the Gear 360.