Samsung will finally sell Gear 360 camera in U.S.

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The Korean electronics giant launched the 360 camera in South Korea and Singapore in late April and has been slow to release it elsewhere. Samsung’s finally going to sell it in the U.S. — but only during VidCon this week.

The Gear 360 will cost $349.99 and be available in a limited quantity. A proper U.S. launch will apparently come later this year.

Samsung’s also renaming its Milk VR app to Samsung VR. This makes sense, but can I just say WTF Samsung?

With the consumer availability of many VR headsets — mobile or PC-powered like the Gear VR, Oculus Rift and HTC Vive — people, like me, are itching to shoot 360 video without needing to blow a couple thousand bucks on a fancy camera rig.

The 360Fly, while not capable of shooting full 360 video, just released a 4K model (Mashable review coming soon) and the LG 360 Cam is available, too. Even Kodak sells its 360 video cameras in the U.S.

Out of all the consumer 360 cameras, the Gear 360 looks the most impressive and yet very few people have been able to even try it out.

I’m all for bringing “the power of VR technology directly to the people” as Marc Mathieu, Samsung Electronics America’s chief marketing officer, says in a press release, but the Gear 360’s slow rollout has been upsetting.

Selling the 360 camera to popular content creators at VidCon is a good approach since it’s putting the technology in the hands of the people who are building their careers on video platforms like YouTube and Vine, but it also severely limits its expansion to a larger audience.

Sure, I understand getting the camera in the hands of YouTubers with a large subscriber base will create a ripple effect to convince viewers to buy one as well, but it’s still lame.

While most people may not create very exciting 360 video with viral potential, some people, like Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg are just fine with capturing something more personal like their child’s first steps — to be relived in a VR headset years later.

Source: Mashable

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