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Bringing Virtual Reality Right to Your iPhone

Virtual reality has attracted numerous attention from small start-ups to blue chips companies like Walt Disney. In the midst of the hysteria, Shot decided to take a different path. The path less traveled. Shot yesterday launched a campaign on the crowd-funding site, Kickstarter, about a product that will enable iPhone 6 users to create, share and watch VR using their phone. The focus on iPhone 6 is because it has an outstanding camera and impressive processing power. With the gadget believed to be in its last stages, Shot is ensuring that the device will be able to capture immersive photos and videos.

Shot is a device composed of two lenses charged with increasing the field of view of a phone’s camera and an app which allows users to record and share immersive content with unmatched ease. It also has a camera that takes photos simultaneously with the phone’s camera. To successfully use the Shot, you open the app, slide the lens attachment then you can start recording and sharing both videos photos. The app has an interface similar to other apps like Vine or Instagram. When used with a virtual reality HMD, the app allows you to look around. This adds a thrill to your photos and videos.

shot originalThe Shot is compatible with Google’s VR headset, the Cardboard. It offers several visualization modes that you can use to watch content posted by friends. These modes are;

  •  Preview Mode: This mode allows you to look around in the video and photos by simply tilting and moving your phone.
  • Full-screen mode: It is very similar to the preview mode. Only that it offers a full-screen view.
  • Full-screen Mode with VR headset: This mode offers a fully immersive experience. The user is required to wear a virtual reality HMD. This allows the user to look around by moving their head.

A lot of research has gone into this project. Not every fisheye can be used to capture immersive VR photos or videos. Finding the proper configuration was, therefore, a very tormenting task. Shot is easy to slide in and out making it very convenient to use. When using the Shot, it’s important that it is perfectly aligned with phone’s camera so as to function optimally.

So as to take a 360-degree photo, the app uses the phone’s (front camera) and the Shots camera (rear camera) simultaneously to take a photo. It merges them into a high-resolution panorama in a transparent way to the user.

When recording videos, only a single camera is used making it impossible to create a 360-degree video like with the photos. Videos captured using shot cover 235 degrees which is equivalent to looking around while sitting on a chair. This is a big improvement compared to the original 75-degree field of view (fov).

William Viana and Jorge Leria, the brains behind this device have promised to deliver a quality product that will not only be affordable but also portable. They have also promised to make 3D further affordable and within reach for all people around the world by coming up with and Android version of the same.

The campaign launch yesterday is expected to end on November after which product will enter into final prototyping. The campaign is expected to raise €3, 761 EUR within 30 days. 162 packers have already pledged. Full-scale production of this product is expected to start in February 2016 and full shipment to start on April the same year. Enthusiasts anticipate that these two engineers will raise sufficient funds to carry out the prototyping and production within the scheduled time. The reaction from iPhone user so far is very encouraging and is a sign that VR is ripe for the mainstream.


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2 Thoughts to “Bringing Virtual Reality Right to Your iPhone”

  1. Elizabeth

    Thanks for the update! Glad to hear Samsung will be supported!

  2. Ferhan ahmadshah

    One big concern, which might have been addressed earlier is this: will there be Oculus support from day one? Because as nice as a custom app is, the user base will mostly be on Samsung Gear VR by Oculus because it’s only $99 and is better produced than Google Cardboard.

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