Soon You’ll Be Able to Watch Live-Streamed Video in Virtual Reality

Live-streamed video capture is a medium that has absolutely exploded in popularity over the last couple of years. From showing off your pro-level gaming skills on Twitch to rounding up your followers on Periscope, anyone from a celebrity to the average Joe can now show the world exactly what they’re up to. The primary problem we face when entering into the world of virtual reality, is how we can advance this newly popular media to be compatible with the new platform.

Currently, very few 360 degree camera setups even exist, and to get your hands on one is no simple task. At the moment they are both expensive and messy, and only really accessible to large organizations that want to ensure they maintain their stance on the cutting edge of technology. Luckily for you and me however, a little company called Videostitch is looking to make a big splash on the consumer 3D video industry.

The company is looking to take the reigns of the new platform with it’s new camera which it is calling the Orah 4i. In the past, the company only made the software which is required for 3D video modules to be able to render their video in 3D space, but are now looking to take hold of the new industry of virtual reality with it’s own proprietary hardware. The Orah 4i is a tiny camera module with an array of wide angle lenses, allowing the user to capture an entire space with ease.

The module connects to a separate box which does all of the processing, utilizing a separate Intel CPU and Nvidia GPU. Though the camera module needs to be plugged into the render box via Ethernet for it to operate, it is still much, much smaller than any existing option on the market, and allows users to set up a live 360 degree environment with ease, and without a mess of cabling to deal with. While most modules of this feature set are big and bulky, the company showed off the ability to transport the entire setup in just a few small backpacks. If that’s not mobile, I don’t know what is.

One of the most important aspects of the camera, however, is the video quality. The Orah 4i can stream in full 4k resolution, and while that may be a bit unnecessary for users streaming things like conference calls, quality can be a huge factor depending on the use case. Think of a user going on a hike in the mountains. Data permitting, one could potentially put their viewers on a high mountaintop, filled with beautiful valleys land lush scenery. In cases like this, quality is one of the most important features you can deliver, and Videostitch’s Orah 4i is looking to make sure you get the absolute best experience from your headset.

For now, the company is selling the device at a price of $1,800 USD, although that price is expected to rise to double that once the product reaches a full retail launch. And while that price is not exactly cheap for most people, it lays a solid foundation for cheaper modules to be designed in the future. Currently, arrays like the one Videostitch is showing off can can cost in the range of $20,o00 or more, so in comparison, I suppose you could say it is inexpensive. As the technology progresses, however, it’s very likely that we will see more consumer-centric live-stream modules coming in the not too distant future.

Would you be interested in picking up a 3D camera? Do you live stream content yourself?


via: The Verge

Photo Credit: The Verge

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