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Facebook “Surround 360” open source VR camera introduced

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Facebook is working on the invention of its own virtual reality camera to deliver 360 degrees VR video experience.

The company aims to involve the general public, especially the developers, in this project by open sourcing it.

Detailing his 10-year plans for Facebook at F8, Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg revealed the prized VR camera, christened Surround 360.

Surround 360 is basically comprised of 17-lenses. It is a 3D VR camera which seems like a UFO on a stick.

The most distinctive aspect of Surround 360 is that it requires almost no post-production work on it. Facebook plans to release the software as well as the design of Surround 360 via Github in summer 2016.

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The design team of Surround 360 has revealed that the requisite hardware tech for rigging together this 3D VR camera will cost around $30,000. Facebook Chief Product Officer Chris Cox said in his statement:

“We do not have ambitions of getting into the camera business, but we realize there wasn’t a good reference camera”

The results of Surround 360 have been surprisingly amazing. Each of the 17 lenses is a 4MP lens. These 4K lenses can capture video in up to 8K with the data being conveyed at 30 Gbps to the hard drive.

The device has one fisheye lens mounted on the top and another two on the bottom. This design implies a seamless 360 degrees view, without a hole or camera pole.

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The device has a remarkable working limit and can shoot for hours without overheating. The easy to assemble design ensure portability.

The state-of-the-art design and ingenious software for video stitching imply that the footage can be distributed faster, owing to less post-production required.

Facebook aims to fast-forward the VR industry in general, and 360 degrees video production in particular, so as to bring the VR technology into the mainstream.

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