Samsung first unveiled the latest Gear 360 camera in early March but no further information about the shipping or price was provided. Finally, after almost three months, the Gear 360 is available for purchase and the South-Korean electronics giant starting shipping the handheld camera just today. The new Gear 360, which is the second version after last year’s model of the 360-camera, is available on Samsung’s own website and Amazon.
The Samsung Galaxy Gear 360 produces 15 MP images but compared to the previous model, the Gear 360 has actually downgraded when it comes to the fisheye lens megapixel quality from the dual 12-MP fisheye lenses in the last model, to the dual 8.3 MP fisheye lenses in the new model. But, as we all know, the number of megapixel doesn’t define the full quality of the image. Now the Gear 360 supports 360-degrees 4K footage instead of the 2K footage the last model supported which means crisper, sharper qualities of your videos. The high-quality footage is also ideal for VR footage and you can view videos with the Gear VR headset if you own one.
As far as app support goes, the Gear 360 can now be used for live-streaming in social networking platforms such as Facebook, Instagram or Youtube given that you have installed the applications necessary for live-streaming via the Gear 360 and unfortunately, they are only available in Samsung phones. Still, the capability of live video streaming is a new development in the Samsung Gear that was not present in the last model.
Other specifications and features of the new device include a 1,150mAh battery and an in-app gallery that showcases all of the images or footage you have captured with your new gear. The Gear 360 itself is light in weight, smart in design and travel-friendly. It is simple to use with basic button controls. There is also a small outlet at the bottom of the camera that can allow you to connect it with a tripod for an even better experience. Additionally, the Gear 360 now uses USB-C instead of the traditional microUSB but it still features a microSD card slot.
The Gear 360 is compatible with all the latest Galaxy devices and even non-Galaxy devices like the iPhone. However, connecting the camera to a non-Samsung product has its shortcomings. As mentioned earlier, the live-streaming feature is only available in Samsung phones. Also, if you’re using iPhone 6 and below, you won’t be able to watch the videos you are recording as you record them. Furthermore, the setting up the Gear 360 with the iPhone is a tedious process in itself compared to connecting the gear with a Samsung device since there is no Bluetooth facility in the iPhone series.
This new 360-camera by Samsung does not obviously feature gold standard specs like high-end, professional cameras and video recording devices but it does a decent job to reach a wide audience of consumers which was perhaps the goal of Samsung this time.
The Samsung Gear 360 has also seen a giant leap in price compared to the last model. Not a leap forwards though! The new camera costs a $100 less than its predecessor. It is now priced only at US $229. Even better, Samsung S8 and S8+ buyers get an amazing deal where if they buy their new smartphone between May 25th to June 19th, the Gear 360 can cost them only US $50 extra.