10 October 2014

HTC reinvents photography with the RE camera

HTC aims to reinvent photography with the RE, a new type of camera. The new handheld device is waterproof, and can take time lapse shots or act as a remote viewfinder for a smartphone.

Source: HTC blog.

"HTC has been setting the standard for smartphones for years - today we’re focused on redefining the concept of imaging forever,” said Peter Chou, CEO, HTC. “As a company we don’t stand still and our devotion to innovation has seen us take smart photography in a completely new direction for our business and our customers. Once people get a RE in their hands, they won’t want to put it down. This is everybody’s opportunity to get out from behind the lens and start living in the moment again.”

The cylindrical RE has a built-in grip sensor that instantly activates the camera when it is picked up, eliminating the need for a power button. Its large shutter button captures photos with a single tap and videos with a longer press, making it easy to capture high-quality stills or video.

Designed with the philosophy that users "want to be at the heart of the action, not peering through a lens", the RE and has a 16MP CMOS sensor, supports Full HD (1080p) video recording and has a 146-degree wide-angle lens. It also has simple slow-motion and time-lapse recording options. 

The RE is also waterproof out of the box*, no casing or protection needed. It comes with 32MB ROM, and 256MB DDR RAM with a microSD for expansion for recording pictures and video before they are transferred elsewhere.

RE interacts with a smartphone through the RE mobile app, which syncs photos, videos and time-lapse recordings over Wi-Fi. Available on Android and iOS**, the RE app backs up pictures and recordings to the smartphone or the cloud. The device can also be controlled remotely through the app to transform a smartphone into a remote viewfinder.

Adding another layer of flexibility and potential, an open API/SDK will enable HTC’s partners to bring new experiences to the device and to social platforms like Tencent and Instagram. RE will soon offer real-time video streaming to YouTube.

RE will be available in the US from late October, with other markets following later. Accessories are already available, including various mounts so it can be used like a GoPro, and charging equipment. The app can be downloaded here.

*Rated IPX7, 1 meter underwater for 30 minutes, out of the box.

**Compatible with Android 4.3 and upwards, iOS 7 and 8.