The Samsung Gear 360 camera, capable of capturing 360° images and video, will be available for purchase in limited quantities during VidCon, a convention for the online video industry, in Anaheim, California running from June 23-25. The Gear 360 was initially announced back in February 2016, alongside the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge, but this is the first time it will be available for purchase in the United States. The initial price will be $349.99, and Samsung will release additional availability details later this year.

The small, spherical Gear 360 uses two 180° field-of-view cameras, each with an f/2.0 lens, to capture 30MP still images or 3840x1920 video that’s viewable with Samsung’s Gear VR headset or mobile devices. It includes a microUSB port for charging and is powered by an internal 1350mAh removable battery. The camera includes a standard tripod mount and carries an IP53 rating for dust and splash resistance, which can be improved to IP68 with a waterproof housing that’s sold separately. Pictures and video can be saved to a microSD card. The Gear 360 can also use Wi-Fi Direct and a companion app running on one of Samsung’s latest smartphones, including the Galaxy S6/S7, Galaxy S6/S7 edge, Galaxy S6 edge+, and Galaxy Note5, to enable remote camera control and live preview features and for transferring content to the phone for editing. The Gear 360 also includes a small PMOLED display and control buttons that allow it to be used independently of a smartphone.

To further broaden the appeal of its Gear VR platform, Samsung is opening up Samsung VR (known previously as Samsung Milk VR) to user-generated content, allowing people to share their 360° videos and providing them a way to view the content with the Gear VR.

Finally, the new Samsung Creators initiative will offer content creators a series of seminars and classes to help spur VR production. This program will also sponsor competitions, the first starting in July, to provide some incentive to aspiring filmmakers to develop VR content for Samsung’s platform. More information is available on the Samsung Creators website.

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  • SaolDan - Wednesday, June 22, 2016 - link

  • dsraa - Wednesday, June 22, 2016 - link

    Cool. I can think of plenty of ideas for this. I can go on a bike ride, or skateboard, or any adventure really with this, and then show my friends what I did in VR, using google cardboard and my S7! It would be like they were there......
  • andrewaggb - Wednesday, June 22, 2016 - link

    Well I think that's the dream, I'm sure in practice it'll take a lot of software wizardry to make that work. ... I suspect if they are on rails (can't move anywhere you didn't move and only look around) that it should look pretty good.
  • valinor89 - Wednesday, June 22, 2016 - link

    You mean like 99% of "rollercoaster" android VR demos? Is there any mobile VR experience were you have to move yourself?
  • webdoctors - Wednesday, June 22, 2016 - link

    When I was a kid, my friends would go out biking with me...
  • JKflipflop98 - Wednesday, June 22, 2016 - link

    This still captures in 2D, though. It won't feel like you're there. Watching 2D 360 videos in VR is like there's a big screen that wraps all the way around you and the video is being projected onto the screen.

    You need 360 3D capture before this idea is going to take off.
  • wrkingclass_hero - Wednesday, June 22, 2016 - link

    If you guys keep using this "promoted stories powered by outbrain" crap, I'm going to use adblock.
  • abhaxus - Wednesday, June 22, 2016 - link

    Agree completely. I scrolled down, saw it, and thought I must be on the wrong site for a minute.

  • lmcd - Thursday, June 23, 2016 - link

    already forced me into it. I whitelisted Anandtech before the Purch changes
  • BugblatterIII - Wednesday, June 22, 2016 - link

    I know it's hard to do 360 in 3D but without that these things just aren't of much interest.

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