Google Releases New Yi Halo VR Camera With 17 4K Cameras

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Google's earlier Jump camera, the GoPro Odyssey packed 16 synchronised GoPro Hero4 Black cameras to deliver 360-degree VR footage. The product's hefty price tag may scare away some creators, but Google wants to get its latest toy in the hands of its creative community. Google said it will give more than 100 filmmakers "free access to a Jump camera and free unlimited use of the Jump Assembler" so they can "make their vision a reality". It's a monster camera rig content creators will flock instantly to.

There are 16 cameras around the circumference of the Halo and one in the middle facing upwards.

With the exponential rise in 360-Degree and VR content, it is a no-brainer for Google to come up with such an advanced VR camera rig. Yi, founded a year ago, is a US-based startup backed mostly by Chinese tech giant Xiaomi.

Having worked originally with GoPro to design the "Odyssey" camera for Jump, this time it's Yi Technology who have worked with Google to create the Yi Halo, which the companies are calling the "next-generation" of Jump cameras.

The huge camera setup is capable of shooting 8K stereoscopic video at 30 frames per second (fps) or 5.8K at 60 frames per second.

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Facebook, meanwhile, has chosen to build its own camera for two consecutive years, although this year the social network is looking to camera company Flir to build a brawnier 24-camera rig alongside Facebook's own smaller six-camera system. Some may say that this gadget looks just like an old-school slide carousel, weighing approximately 8 pounds.

With its built in Wi-Fi, you can securely and remotely control your YI Halo with your smartphone app. Users should expect about an hour of battery life. Furthermore, the camera rig also offers a touchscreen that displays stats like SD card capacity and battery indicator.

Applications for the Jump Start program are open today.

Starting today, the Yi Halo will be made available to creators and filmmakers through Google's limited access Jump Start program. Yi Technology has achieved another first with the inclusion of this camera in the rig. Under Jump Start, Google will provide some filmmakers with the camera for free (to use), as well as the Jump Assembler that produces the virtual reality footage.

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