YI HALO Google Jump-Powered VR Camera Announced At NAB 2017

Posted April 26, 2017

The company's Chief Executive Officer Sean Da called the YI HALO "the most advanced VR system out there", adding how the Seattle, Washington-based consumer electronics manufacturer spent countless resources to develop a device that's both capable and simple to use. 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.

Speaking of skilled VR filmmakers, there are "over" 100 gratis "tools" up for grabs as part of a newly launched Jump Start program, with applications open until May 22. It's a monster camera rig content creators will flock instantly to.

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The Yi Halo also has one more camera than the Odyssey, which is placed on top of the rig in order to better capture 360-degree footage directly above the viewer's head when observed through a VR headset. It uses Google's Jump software to stitch the footage together into a single, immersive 360-degree VR film. Yi, founded past year, is a US-based startup backed mostly by Chinese tech giant Xiaomi. The Yi Halo is the second Jump camera from Google, after the GoPro Odyssey, to be aimed at high quality VR content creators. It weighs less than seven and a half pounds, including the battery, and is easy to mount and easily portable. There's Nokia's $40,000 Ozo camera, Facebook's x6 and x24 rigs, GoPro's Fusion for 5.2K action footage and now the Halo. It's a ridiculously high-end piece of hardware, with no less than 17 separate 4K cameras built in - a 16-camera ring topped with the 17th lens, which faces straight up.

Technology giant Google yesterday introduced the next generation of its virtual reality Jump camera - the Yi Halo - and announced Jump Start, a program to give Jump cameras to more VR filmmakers. The YI HALO camera has been built to natively work with the Assembler. It also has a smartphone app, a touchscreen control panel, and there are levels on the rig structure so filmmakers can line up the horizon. Users should expect about an hour of battery life.

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The Yi Halo has 16 2.5K cameras arranged in a ring, with a seventeenth unit facing upward. Filmmakers can apply for free cameras and use of the Jump software.

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