To promote the upcoming 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, Adidas has outfitted one if its brand-new “Brazuca” soccer balls with six HD action cams, capable of capturing a 360-degree panoramic video from the ball’s perspective. This is, in fact, not the first action cam sporting multiple cameras that we’ve seen, nor the first multi-cam apparatus in ball form. But it is indeed the first soccer ball – at least that we’ve heard of – capable of capturing 360-degree videos.
The ball, aptly called the ‘Brazucam,’ will be traveling the world in the coming weeks, going to countries including Spain, Germany, and England. There, it will join the respective national soccer teams during their exercises, and take some beautiful spherical panoramic video footage while being kicked around by soccer stars such as Xavi Hernandez, Dani Alves, Cristian Tello, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Manuel Neuer, Philipp Lahm, and David Villa. In order to capture steady images, the Brazucam’s six cameras are supported by a custom-made image stabilization technology, wrapped around by precious leather.
You can follow the adventures of the Brazucam via the official Brazuca Twitter account, and over at the Adidas Football YouTube channel (football as in soccer, for those in the States). So far, only one promotional video clip has been uploaded, and it unfortunately contains only very little footage from the Brazucam. But Adidas promises that there’s more to come in the next seven weeks.
Sadly, there is no technical information available for the soccer-loving geeks among us. So we cannot say what types of cameras are inside the Brazucam, whether or not the individual streams are being stitched together to form a true 360-degree panoramic video, how the image stabilization works, etc. Also, we currently have no idea what will happen to the Brazucam once the FIFA World Cup kicks off in June, but it will probably not be used during official matches – as much fun as it would be, being able to watch the matches from a “ball’s-eye-view.”