Nokia launches OZO virtual reality camera

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By Larry Banks

Nokia, which was at one time the largest phone company in the world, has just unveiled a new spherical camera called OZO for making 3D movies and games that can be watched with virtual reality (VR) headsets.

The device was demonstrated at an event in Los Angeles and takes video and audio in 360 degrees via eight sensors and microphones. It’s a first from Nokia’s digital media solutions unit, and one of the areas it will focus on for future growth. However, the camera is said to be a professional grade system, rather than being aimed at everyday consumers.

Nokia bets big on virtual reality

Nokia is restructuring after it sold its mobile phone business to Microsoft last year, and is following that with a $17.2 billion acquisition of Alcatel-Lucent in order to boost its network equipment business.

“We expect that virtual reality experiences will soon radically enhance the way people communicate and connect to stories, entertainment, world events and each other”, said Nokia executive Ramzi Haidamus.

Earlier in May, GoPro announced a similar concept with 16 cameras that used Google’s software, while other companies such as Facebook and Samsung have already announced various plans to enter the virtual reality market.

Nokia is also said to be planning a comeback in the mobile phone business by designing and licensing phones once the deal with Microsoft allows it to late next year.

Nokia, due to report its quarterly results this Thursday, is also looking to sell its mapping business HERE Maps.

SOURCE: Reuters.

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