Smartphone’s today can use software to take 360-degree images. But they take time—too much time, if you ask me—and they’re not always accurate. Ricoh’s new Theta, a curiously-shaped wand-like camera announced this past week, is actually a lot cooler than you’d expect, despite its slightly redundant existence. The results pretty impressive—the price is not.
Instead of stitching together panoramas and spinning around in circles like a weirdo to capture your entire surroundings, Theta has two opposite facing cameras which can capture fully-spherical images—just press the shutter as you would on a normal camera and you’re set. The device is small enough to just stuff in a shirt pocket, comes with Wi-Fi built-in and is just 3.30 ounces.
As with a lot of cameras these days, Theta can connect to iOS and Android smartphones, allowing users to remotely control the camera; you can also pull images straight off the camera with a companion smartphone app, which you can then edit and then share through Ricoh’s Theta360 portal. Or, if you’d prefer to edit the photos on your computer, Ricoh has developed software that’s currently available for the Mac.
Theta likely isn’t something you’ll ask for as a stocking stuffer, especially at $400. But it’s neat to see a company trying out something new, even if most smartphones are capable of taking similar imagery (with the help of software). I’m sure a lot of cool shots will turn up in some terrific locations around the world, and I can’t wait to see them. You can see a few at the source link below.