In their simplest form, dash cams are useful tools for documenting accidents or traffic violations in an objective way. They’ve grown increasingly popular in recent years, especially in countries where the practice of throwing oneself onto a stationary car and claiming to be hurt in order to defraud drivers and insurance companies is common. But by nature of being constantly on, dash cams have also captured some shocking, hilarious, and otherwise amazing footage. It’s this second function that Goluk looks to capitalize on with its T1 dash cam.
Looking a bit like a tube of futuristic lipstick (especially in optional pink finish), the cylindrically-shaped T1 slides into an adhesive windshield dock and records video in constant loops. Like some other dash cams, it can auto-detect accidents and sudden stops thanks to a built-in G-sensor. Additionally, it can provide proximity warnings when it detects another vehicle close in front of it. But it goes a step beyond the standard dash cam with the included MagicKey wireless remote. When pressed, the MagicKey (which is essentially a single, watch-sized button) saves a twelve-second video clip and automatically sends it via Wi-Fi from the camera to the Mobile Goluk App (Android or iOS). From there, users can instantly share the clip through a variety of social media, including Goluk’s own community that was created specially for the camera.
The T1 was made possible thanks to funding from Foxconn (which manufactures the device) and Kaifu Lee (a former Google executive), and co-developed with Ambarella, the chipset maker. In the year since it has been on the market, over 300,000 videos have been shared through Goluk App. This is perhaps a testament to the dawning ubiquity of dash cams around the world, but Goluk has also built the T1 to be more than just a dash cam.
The camera is built around a 2-megapixel Aptina CMOS sensor capable of recording Full HD (1080p) video to a Micro SD card. The lens features a wide, 152-degree angle of view. In addition to the windshield mount, the device can be mounted – action cam style – to a bike frame, chest harness, or helmet. The Smart Docking Station accessory provides additional battery power for outdoor adventure shoots, and also includes a 1/4-inch screw mount compatible with any standard tripod.
Goluk isn’t exactly aiming to compete against the high-end of the market (the T1 lacks many of the features found in the GoPro Hero4 Black, like high-resolution stills and 4K video), but for a price of just $130 on Amazon, it offers a compelling option for more casual consumers who want an easy way to record and share life events, both in and out of the car.