Are you looking to buy a 360-degree camera?
You might want to consider Shenzen-based Insta360, which makes 360-degree cameras, including the new $299 Insta360 One for mobile devices. It uses two cameras to capture 4K at 30 frames per second. It also takes 24-megapixel stills. It even offers the ability to select a photo or a 1080p frame of video from the 360-degree photos and videos that it captures, thanks to its “FreeCapture" software.
With FreeCapture, you can “shoot first, point later". Here's how it works: when you’re playing back a 360-degree photo on your smartphone, you can zoom in on the image and frame it into a 16:9, 4:3, or 1:1 composition. Then, tap the button to save a full-resolution of the 2D image to your phone. This process works for 360-degree video, too. You can even pan around by moving your phone.
The Insta360 also has the ability to do bullet-time style 360 videos, as long as you use a selfie stick or a string attachment. The camera offers a software-enabled 240fps slow-motion shot, which relies on the camera's 120fps video capture capability and the gyroscope data to slow the frames and create a 240fps video. This results in footage that slows to a near stop - a neat effect, to say the least.
The camera can be remotely controlled with Bluetooth or directly controlled by a tethered phone through Lightning or microUSB. After a video is captured, FreeCapture not only lets you shift from standard perspectives but also apply camera effects, such as "tiny planet" and "rabbit hole". Your phone display acts as a viewfinder. The iPhone version can be ordered now, with shipments starting 5 September.
The Android version is shipping shortly, Insta360 said. The US retail price mentioned above gets you the camera, as well as a two-in-one case and camera stand, a MicroSD card, a Micro-USB cable, a lens cloth, and a string attachment. The selfie-stick, Bluetooth remote control, and IP68 waterproof housing are all optional and sold separately. There's no word yet on UK pricing.
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