When the observer determines the image

Computer. In the future, facing a movie or an image, the viewer will determine what he wants.

The cameras can film everything that unfolds around them with virtual reality technology 360. The viewer selects the images perspective.

When Samsung introduced in late February its new series of smartphones Galaxy S7 in the exhibition “Mobile World Congress” in Barcelona, ​​a distinguished guest stole the show at the art. To everyone’s surprise, Mark Zuckerberg, founder of social network Facebook, was invited on stage to reveal, not without euphoria, dreams for the future.

But Mr. Zuckerberg did not talk about smartphones, but a small device similar to picture a tennis ball, named Gear 360. The camera films and photographs everything that happens around him, either 360 transforming this virtual reality. The viewer can then choose by viewing this moment on their smartphone, tablet or its virtual reality headset (VR) the interests that view.

Get involved

This new technology could revolutionize photography and video. Until now, the person who was behind the camera determined that the film or image to present on the screen. This is not always easy every day, for example at a family party, you must make clear to guests that they must come together to appear on the plate.

In the case of a photo taken at the table, the faces of the guests in the foreground are very clear as those of the most remote people will tend to become blurred. It can also sometimes be dangerous to yourself included in an artistic view of a landscape, a monument or a spectacular building, while the arm of the photographer and too short and that the tripod is stayed home .

But all this belongs to the past. The new cameras, such as Gear 360 Samsung or LG 360 Cam put technology at the center of the image. Equipped with sensors 15 Megapixels to very large fish eye type of angle on each side, they can film and photograph everything that is around them. Combining the two objectives gives rise to a 360 degrees.

In practice, placed on a table, like this camera will photograph all the guests. Positioned between a building or monument and its owner, it will display the image the two objects.

Ease of use

Using the Samsung model wants to be very simple, since just press a button to take pictures or shoot video for two hours before the camera’s memory card is full. It is possible to monitor in real time the images or videos from a recent smartphone Galaxy line, the contents are transmitted via WLAN and stored on the mobile device.

These images can then be viewed on a tablet, computer or smartphone identically to traditional clichés. But it is also possible to walk around the panorama, simply by moving the mouse or finger on the surface of the screen, allowing in the case of a snapshot of a table of not even a part of the guests.

This interactive viewing method also works for video, making possible the change of point of view while scrolling images. These contents can also be viewed with virtual reality helmets to suit the changing view of the stage movements of the head of the observer.

However, before being viewed contents are automatically adjusted to the distortion caused by the use of fish-eye sensors. Videos or images can not however be broadcast in real time, for example through video calls, current smartphones still lacking power.

Gear 360 available spring

These images may already be published and viewed on YouTube and Facebook. Unsurprisingly, Mark Zuckerberg said that these virtual reality contents represent the next revolution, expecting of course that they are found on its platform.

The Gear 360 should be marketed this spring to 450 francs nonetheless. Attacked by Chinese manufacturer of entry-level smartphone, Samsung, which also faces competition from Apple in the high-end, seeking new growth drivers, while some markets are early signs of saturation. LG has for its part not yet communicated about the price and availability of its 360. Cam (ats / nxp)

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