Giro and Bell Helmet parent company BRG in December announced a partnership with 360fly, the creator of an innovative wearable camera system that provides a 360-degree field of view. Now, Bell has a new helmet, the Super 2R with 360fly, which incorporates the 360-degree 4K camera system and boasts coming features like a crash-avoidance system that can notify riders of dangers outside their range of vision.
Pretty fly with its one eye
The 360fly, which resembles a one-eyed golf ball, uses an eight-element, ultra-wide-angle, fish-eye lens to provide a 360-degree field of view from the center of the lens and 240 degrees from side to side.
If that sounds confusing, think of it like this: when staring at the ceiling, you can move your eye in circle to get a 360 field of view and you can move your eye from side to side to get a roughly 170 degree field of view. Unlike the human eye, the 360fly captures all these perspectives at once.
Since you can't view all these perspectives at once, the user can edit video and select specific points to be the main perspective. Videos uploaded to the 360fly site allow mobile viewers to swipe to view different perspectives. Clicking and dragging the mouse or touchpad will adjust the field of view for computer users.
Click here to give it a try.
The current 360fly retails for $399 (UK and Australian pricing was not immediately available). It has a resolution of 1504x1504 and records video at a rate of 27.97 frames per second. This puts in behind industry leader GoPro in terms of resolution and speed, although it certainly wins on perspective. It's possible that a more powerful version of the 360fly is in development.
The device is water- and shock-resistant and features a built-in 32gb flash memory. The company claims this will provide approximately two hours of recording time. There are currently apps for Apple and Andriod users, as well as desktop applications.
Mountain bike helmet one of four 360fly lids
BRG Sports unveiled four helmets at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, including a road motorcycle helmet, an off-road moto helmet, a snow helmet and the full-face mountain bike helmet, the Super 2R with 360fly, which has a detachable chin bar. Pricing has not yet been announced.
The helmet cameras can also shoot in conventional 16x9 video.
As you might expect, there is an app for the 360fly, which lets users edit and share video to Facebook and YouTube. The camera adds additional info to the video with a build-in GPS, barometer, altimeter and accelerometer.
As with the original 360fly camera, the helmet camera has Bluetooth and Wi-Fi.
Claimed battery life is up to two hours.
BRG and 360fly say a few more features are in the works, including:
- an "AutoPilot action tracking" system that supposedly allows for easier, rider-centric edits
- a collision-avoidance alert that senses potential dangers outside the rider’s field of vision and alerts the rider
- live streaming of 360-degree video
- an auto-generated highlight reel of the best one to two minutes of video based on what has the most action
BRG says these features are being tested in preparation for the helmets’ debut at retail later in the year.
Check out this footage of the 360fly in action.