Lenovo and Xiaomi have come out with point-and-shoot cameras, which record in YouTube’s new VR180 format. The new cameras, although they don’t support 360-degree videos, provide a much more immersive experience compared to regular content when viewed on a headset.
Lenovo Mirage and Xiaomi Yi Horizon
The Lenovo Mirage Daydream and Xiaomi Yi Horizon VR180 share the same basic formula, namely two 13-megapixel 3D fisheye lenses on the front. They also feature tiny 2.2-inch 640 x 360 touchscreen LCDs on the back (Yi’s display flips around to take a selfie). They support Google’s VR180 app for instant streaming of content.
Under the hood, they come with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 626, which should handle operations fairly easily. Storage is set at 16 GB, which is expandable via microSD. They use Wi-Fi for streaming Live videos and Bluetooth for connectivity with a companion app, with the Mirage Daydream coming with optional LTE.
5K+ Quality on Yi Horizon
While the cameras are intended to produce 4K content, the Yi Horizon VR180 is apparently capable of shooting 5.7K videos at 30fps, too. It is aided by a four-mic setup for clearer audio. The produced content can be seen in 3D in either a virtual reality headset, or on 2D on a phone. Battery life is said to last up to 2 hours of continuous usage.
Google claims the 180-degree cameras are more suited for regular usage than 360-degree cameras, which is why it is jumping on the idea. However, for the price expected price-tag you can also get fairly capable 360-degree cameras making the final selection a matter of personal preference.
The Yi Horizon VR180 is expected to ship this Spring, while the Lenovo Mirage Daydream is expected to ship in second quarter. While pricing is not confirmed, the Lenovo camera will be priced below $400.