UPDATED 22:41 EDT / FEBRUARY 01 2016


Report claims Samsung may launch 360 degree VR camera alongside Galaxy S7

Not only will Samsung Electronic Co. Ltd. be launching its new flagship Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge phones in Barcelona later this month, they will also be launching a new 360 degree virtual reality (VR) camera, at least according to one report Monday.

SamMobile claims exclusively that the South Korean chaebol will be launching the Gear 360 VR camera, a device said to be a compact spherical camera capable of capturing 360-degree imagery using two 180 degree fisheye lenses.

The Gear 360 is said to have its own battery, an unknown amount of onboard storage, and can pair with a phone via Bluetooth through a Gear 360 Connect application.

While mention is made of software designed specifically for the device, it’s not clear whether it will only work with the new Galaxy S7, with older Samsung phones or even other Android devices as well.

As we noted when Samsung announced details on its next Unboxed event for February 21st, the teaser video released by the company along with the invite hinted that there might be something unexpected at the event, particularly given that it shows someone staring at a cube through the Samsung Gear virtual reality headset, hence making the launch of the Gear 360 camera a decent enough contender for that position.

Consumer production

While Samsung with its Gear VR virtual reality headset offers the cheapest device on the market, and one of only a few, what remains a barrier for widespread adoption of virtual reality is an accessible and affordable way for everyday people to create their own content.

We don’t know the price of the Gear 360 camera as yet, but presuming it comes in at a reasonable price point (it won’t be as cheap as the Gear VR at $99) it could potentially be a game changer in terms of driving consumer interest in VR content creation, and that will drive the entire, emergent, new VR market across the board.

Stay tuned to SiliconANGLE for all the news from the Samsung Galaxy event February 21 from the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

Image credit: pestoverde/Flickr/CC by 2.0

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