There was a time and place when Nokia reigned over the mobile phone market with complete authority. Over time, Nokia experienced a slow fade in popularity, and by the time iOS and Android were fiercely competing for market share, Nokia was largely irrelevant. Now the company is hoping to jump back into the spotlight by being one among the first manufacturers to embrace the upcoming wave of virtual reality (VR) devices with a brand new VR camera the company calls OZO.
Nokia OZO is One of the Very First VR Cameras
Nokia OZO is a spherical camera equipped with eight lenses and eight microphones, allowing it to capture stereoscopic 3D video in 360-degree panoramas. The idea is that users who purchase VR headsets (targeted for sale at the end of 2015) will be able to watch video that puts the user right in the middle of the action. They’ll have a 360-degree panoramic viewing experience and have the ability to hear sound dynamically move around them as if they were there.
Nokia OZO Isn’t for Consumers
There was no mention of a price point for the camera, and that’s largely because the Nokia OZO isn’t meant for the mass market. Instead, Nokia hopes that it will be a pioneer in VR filmmaking. As such, it’s aiming for professional filmmakers rather than early VR adopters hoping to make quick, sharable content.
Re-purposing Nokia’s Camera Technologies
Prior to Microsoft buying Nokia’s Devices & Services division, the company made some pretty impressive advances in portable camera technology for its Lumia line of smartphones. Nokia’s previous experiences have lead it to partnering up with VR production company Jaunt Studios.
“Our mission has always been to provide filmmakers with tools and techniques that fuel their creative process, unlocking the true potential of their vision,” said Cliff Plumer, president of Jaunt Studios.
Nokia OZO isn’t the first VR camera to be released, but Nokia is hoping its ease of use and quick processing times will help give it the advantage it needs to become the gold standard in the market.