Preproduction models of the GoPro Fusion have begun shipping to content creators signed up for the pilot program. A dual-lens, 360-degree camera, the Fusion is GoPro’s first all-in-one immersive video camera (the company previously offered only the six-camera Omni rig for virtual reality production). Details are still thin on the Fusion’s full specifications, but we have a good idea of what the final model will look like and know that it records 5.2K resolution at 30 frames per second.
The pilot program was originally announced alongside the reveal of the GoPro Fusion itself, and GoPro says it received over 20,000 applications from content creators. Cameras have now shipped to the first wave of selected individuals and production teams, which include the Golden State Warriors, AccuWeather, Getty Images, visual effects and film company Digital Domain, and travel vlogger Louis Cole, among others. The Warriors seem to be the first with confirmed Fusion content online, featuring the 2017 Championship Parade.
The pilot program isn’t just an opportunity to get content up early, and thus help market the Fusion, but will also inform design and usability decisions going forward. As GoPro CEO Nicholas Woodman said in a statement, “We are excited to get Fusion into the hands of creative professionals, both to see the content they create and also to receive feedback that helps us refine the overall user experience for when we launch Fusion to a broader audience later this year.”
The GoPro Fusion, unlike the larger Omni rig, is compact and lightweight enough to be used in virtually the same way as a standard GoPro Hero camera. Although taller than a Hero5 Black, it can still fit in the palm of a hand and attaches to all the regular GoPro mounting accessories. In addition to 5.2K immersive video, the Fusion can capture 1080p fixed-frame footage from any angle, allowing content creators to output both fixed-frame and 360-degree video from the same shot.
While the company has not said how many more applicants will be accepted into the GoPro Fusion pilot program, interested parties can still sign up online. The final production version of the camera is expected to ship later this year at a price that is yet to be determined.