Video calling is convenient because it allows people to easily see their kids and other loved ones while they are at work or traveling. It also makes work conference calls more productive because those doing it can not only hear their co-workers speak, but also see important charts and documents. But it’s hard to see the entire room with most cameras used for such calls.
Panoporter is a 360-degree 1080p HD camera for video calls that allows users to get a 360- or 180-degree view of the room it’s placed in, whether the device is on a table or mounted on a wall. It is controlled via an Android and iOS app. Unlike many 360-degree cameras, like CENTR, that require multiple image sensors to stitch together a panoramic image, the patent-pending Panoporter uses just a single lens and there’s no trade-off in resolution.
Panaporter also features a 4x digital zoom and can be used to record up to two weeks of footage remotely on a 64-GB microSD card. It ships in May at $199, but early bird Kickstarter backers can get one for a pledge starting at $89. Its makers hope to raise $30,000 by March 31.
Assuming that Panoporter indeed provides high-quality 1080p HD resolution when shooting 360 degrees, it’s still not clear how many consumers will find that 360-degree angle significant enough for them to choose this product over existing cameras designed for video conferencing and security from better-known brands. The lack of any monthly fees is a plus.