Disney agrees to use Nokia’s OZO camera for VR content related to its movies

nokia disney ozo virtual reality press photo shade
Nokia Technologies said on Monday that it has signed a deal with The Walt Disney Studios allowing the company known for Mickey Mouse and many other characters to use its new OZO virtual reality camera and associated software to create special VR-based content for a range of Disney films. The marriage began with The Jungle Book movie released earlier this month, which featured two 360-degree videos focused on the Red Carpet premiere and an interview with the cast.

Nokia launched its professional OZO VR camera here in the States back in November 2015 with a crazy expensive $60,000 price tag. The high-dollar device is capable of spherical and stereoscopic video capture, with a spatial audio array thanks to eight built-in, synchronized 2,000 x 2,000 sensors. The video sensors feature a progressive scan with global stutter, and the lenses have an angle view of 195 degrees each. The camera’s minimum imaging distance is 20 feet.

If you’re into photography, this camera has a base sensitivity of ISO 400, a relative aperture of f/2.4, and a base color temperature of 5,000 degrees Kelvin. The solid state audio sensor is omni-directional, providing a full 360-degree soundtrack. The camera also utilizes a 500GB solid state drive to record media in a MOV format that contains 8-channel raw video and 8-channel PCM audio. The SSDs can record 45 minutes of this type of media locked at 30 frames per second.

The new camera can be controlled over a wireless network using a remote application for OS X 10.10 “Yosemite.” The device can even output VR video through an HDMI connection or a stereoscopic virtual reality renderer. It’s made out of milled aluminum alloy in a Lava Grey color, making it somewhat light at 9.3 pounds with the battery included. The camera head itself measures 10.4-by-6.7-by-6.3 inches, while the combined head and mount assembly measures 10.4-by-6.7-by-9.4-inches.

For $60,000, content makers receive the camera itself, a digital cartridge, a camera mount, a docking station, and a power supply, all of which comes in a rugged shipping case. Accessories include a $5,000 OZO digital cartridge bundle, a $1,500 OZO docking station (DS-01), and a $2,500 OZO media module. Nokia says the camera can “dramatically” reduce the time, cost, and complexity typically associated with the post-production process.

“Virtual Reality represents a new frontier in storytelling, and we’re thrilled to be bringing this VR technology to the team at Disney,” said Ramzi Haidamus, President at Nokia Technologies. “OZO will help Disney bring their film properties to life in new ways through immersive entertainment experiences, and our focus will be on helping them get the most out of VR as they begin to uncover all that it has to offer.”

Nokia introduced the OZO Pioneer Program in March to get the camera into the hands of content makers. Qualified participants will see $15,000 knocked off the price, and in return these “Pioneers” are required to provide one minute of footage within 90 days after the camera’s purchase. Pioneers must also take part in two feedback sessions to express their views on the device.

“We hope the Pioneer program will enable an even greater degree of experimentation and creative expression in a new medium that will radically transform the way people connect to stories, experiences, each other, and the world around them,” Nokia said.

The program is open for applications until April 30, 2016 (aka really soon).


2018 was a terrific year for new cameras. Here are our favorites

This year, we saw the unveiling of several exciting new cameras. We look back at our favorite models -- each delivering something unique, yet all are powerful and feature-rich. Camera fans, rejoice!
Smart Home

Facebook Portal and Portal+ video-calling devices gain new content and features

Facebook's Portal devices are video smart speakers with Alexa voice assistants built in that allow you to make calls. The 15-inch Portal+ model features a pivoting camera that follows you around the room as you speak.
Social Media

Snapchat facial recognition could soon power a new portrait mode, code suggests

Digging into Snapchat's code suggests a handful of upcoming camera features, including a portrait mode. The feature appears to use facial recognition A.I. to blur the background. The code also suggests an updated camera interface.

Leica targets street photographers with a pricey camera bundle

Described by the camera company as "your perfect companion in the city," Leica's Street Kit comprises a Leica CL camera body, a 23mm (35mm full-frame equivalent) F2 lens, batteries, a handgrip, and a black leather carrying strap.

Does Qualcomm's latest laptop processor hold up against Intel's Core i5?

Qualcomm has been nipping at Intel's mobile CPU heels for years and now it might finally have overtaken it. To find out whether it's new SoC can hold its own in mid-range computing, we pitted the Snapdragon 8cx vs. Core i5.

Not just for Lightroom anymore, Loupedeck+ now works with Photoshop

Loupedeck+ can now help photographers edit in Photoshop too, thanks to physical controls for swapping tools, running actions, and more. The photo-editing console expanded to include Photoshop in the list of compatible editing programs.

Turn your Raspberry Pi into a Steam streaming hub with Valve’s Steam Link app

Valve's Steam Link app is now fully supported by Raspberry PI hardware, meaning that just about anyone with a few dollars to spare can build their own Steam streaming box in a matter of minutes.

Amazon takes $300 off Intel Core i7 Surface Pro 6 in latest sale

If you're looking for savings on the Surface Pro 6, Amazon is the place to shop. It currently is discounting the Intel Core i7 variant of Microsoft's latest 2-in-1 by $300, though no Type Cover is included.

Here's our head-to-head comparison of Pandora and Spotify

Which music streaming platform is best for you? We pit Spotify versus Pandora, two mighty streaming services with on-demand music and massive catalogs, comparing every facet of the two services to help you decide which is best.

Our favorite Chrome themes add some much-needed pizzazz to your boring browser

Sometimes you just want Chrome to show a little personality and ditch the grayscale for something a little more lively. Lucky for you, we've sorted through the Chrome Web Store to find best Chrome themes available.

Don't keep typing the same thing -- learn to copy and paste with these shortcuts!

Looking for useful Windows keyboard shortcuts? The most common are the cut, copy, paste and undo shortcuts compatible with all kinds of tasks. They can save you an awful lot of time if you learn how to use them.

Latest Facebook bug exposed up to 6.8 million users’ private photos

An API bug recently left an impact on Facebook users. Though the issue has since been fixed, some of the apps on the platform had a wrongful access to consumers photos for 12 days between September 13 and September 25. 

You can now get a Surface Laptop 2 for $800 at the Microsoft Store

Along with deals on other variants, starting configurations of Microsoft's Surface Laptop 2 are now going for $800 online at its retail store, cutting $200 from its usual $1,000 starting price. 

Need a monitor for professional photo-editing? These are the very best

Looking for the best monitor for photo editing? You'll need to factor in brightness, color accuracy, color gamut support and more. Fortunately, we've rounded up the best ones for you, to help you make an educated purchase.