Nokia has unveiled a new and unexpected piece of hardware in the form of a virtual reality camera called Ozo.
It’s a spherical device that can be attached to a standard camera tripod. The Ozo contains eight evenly spaced synchronised camera lenses and the same number of microphones, allowing users to capture full 360 degree video footage and accurate directional audio.
It also works with third party hardware like the Oculus Rift. It’s designed to fit into existing VR setups, not replace them.
On the software front, the Ozo enables love monitoring of captured footage through a VR headset. That’s a huge positive over existing VR camera solutions.
It’s also possible to rapidly assemble playback footage (albeit in a low resolution) without needing to stitch together a panoramic image – a process that typically takes hours.
The Ozo isn’t intended as a commercial product so much as it is a tool for professional film makers, or “professional content creators” to use Nokia’s parlance.
Related: Best Cameras 2015
Apparently, the Ozo is the “first in a planned portfolio of digital media solutions from Nokia Technologies.”
The device isn’t ready for full production as yet, and a full launch will come at a later date, along with final pricing. Don’t expect it to be cheap.