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Samsung unveils new Gear 360

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Samsung has announced a new 360-degree camera with greater live-streaming capabilities but reduced camera specs.

Samsung Electronics has released a new Samsung Gear 360, a 4K resolution-capable 360-degree camera with a refined design for easier use. With enhanced features for high-quality content, the Gear 360 is lightweight and compact, offering an expanded Samsung VR ecosystem.

However, it has reduced the camera specs from 15MP per lens to 8MP per lens. They provide a 15MP image when used in combination. It’s 4K output is dependent on using the lenses simultaneously. The benefit of reduced spec is likely to be a significantly reduced price.

“As consumers turn more to video to share their experiences, we want to deliver accessible and innovative products to make digital content easier to create, share and stream,” said Younghee Lee, Executive Vice President of Global Marketing and Wearable Business, Mobile Communications at Samsung Electronics. “The updated Gear 360 will continue to expand the horizons of what consumers can experience and share.”

Samsung provided the following information:

For the first time, the Gear 360 offers 4K video recording for immersive and realistic digital content. Equipped with 8.4-megapixel image sensors and Bright Lens F2.2 on both dual fisheye lenses, the Gear 360 can create high resolution images.

The Gear 360 leverages Samsung’s innovative technologies and services to seamlessly share, view and edit content. Whether creating a 360-degree video or still images, users can access various viewing modes, editing tools and photo effects and filters to create customized content. Users can also effortlessly convert 360 videos into standard formats for easy-to-share content.
The Gear 360 introduces real-time content sharing. When the Gear 360 is synced with a compatible smartphone or computer, the new device enables users to share their best experiences with high-quality live broadcasting or direct uploading to platforms such as Facebook, YouTube or Samsung VR.


The Gear 360 is compatible with a selection of third-party accessories and mounts. The latest edition of the Gear 360 is compatible with Samsung flagship devices including the newly-released Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+, Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 edge, Galaxy Note5, Galaxy S6 edge+, Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 edge, Galaxy A5 (2017) and Galaxy A7 (2017). The Gear 360 also offers greater compatibility with iOS devices including the iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus and iPhone SE, as well as Windows and Mac computers.

Samsung Gear 360 (2017) Product Specifications

Gear 360 (2017)
Camera  Two CMOS 8.4-megapixel fish-eye cameras
Image Processor  DRIMe5s
Video  MP4 (H.265)

– Dual Lens: 4096×2048 (24fps)

Image  JPEG

– Dual Lens: 15MP

Audio Codec: ACC

Format: MP3, M4A, AAC, OGG

Memory microSD card (Up to 256GB)
Features  Shooting mode

Video, Photo, Time Lapse Video, Looping Video, Landscape HDR

IP53 Certified Dust and Water Resistant
Camera mode

Dual/Single Lens mode

Connectivity  Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (2.4/5GHz)

Wi-Fi Direct

Bluetooth® 4.1

USB 2.0 (Type-C)

Dimension  100.6×46.3×45.1 mm
Weight  130g
Battery  1,160mAh Li-ion
Compatibility  Galaxy S8, Galaxy S8+, S7, S7 edge, Note5, S6 edge+, S6, S6 edge, A5 (2017), A7 (2017) *Android 5.0 or later, iPhone 7, 7 Plus, 6S, 6s Plus, SE, *iOS 10.0 or later, Windows, macOS

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Notre Dame, Scoop Makhathini, GoT, top week in search

From fire disaster to social media disaster, the top Google searches this week covered a wide gamut of themes.

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Paris and the whole world looked on in shock as the 856-year-old medieval Catholic cathedral crumbled into ash. The tragic infernal destruction of this tourist attraction of historical and religious significance led South Africans to generate more than 200 000 search queries for “Notre Dame Cathedral” on Monday. Authorities are investigating the cause of the fire that razed the architectural icon.

In other top trending searches on Google this week, radio presenter Siyabonga Ngwekazi, AKA Scoop Makhathini, went viral when it appeared he had taken to Twitter to expose his girlfriend, Akhona Carpede, for cheating on him. Scoop has since come out to say that he was not responsible for the bitter rant and that his account was hacked. “Scoop Makhathini” generated more than 20 000 search queries on Wednesday.

Fans generated more than 20 000 search queries for “Sam Smith” on Tuesday ahead of the the British superstar’s Cape Town performance at the Grand West Casino. Smith ended up cutting his performance short that night due to vocal strain.

Local Game of Thrones superfans were beside themselves on Sunday, searching the internet high and low for the first episode of the American fantasy drama’s eighth season. “Game of Thrones, season 8, episode 1” generated more than 100 000 queries on Google Search on the weekend.

As the festivities kicked off in California with headliners such as Childish Gambino and Ariana Grande, South Africans generated more than 2 000 search queries for “Coachella” on Saturday.

South Africans generated more than 5 000 search queries for “Wendy Williams” on Friday  as it emerged that the American talk show host had filed for divorce from her husband Kevin Hunter after 21 years of marriage. Hunter has long been rumored to have been cheating on Williams, which reportedly finally led to the divorce.

Search trends information is gleaned from data collated by Google based on what South Africans have been searching for and asking Google. Google processes more than 40 000 search queries every second. This translates to more than a billion searches per day and 1.2 trillion searches per year worldwide. Live Google search trends data is available at https://www.google.co.za/trends/hottrends#pn=p40

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5G smartphones to hit 5M sales in 2019

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According to the latest research from Strategy Analytics, global smartphone shipments will reach a modest 5 million units in 2019. Early 5G smartphone models will be expensive and available in limited volumes. Samsung, LG and Huawei will be the early 5G smartphone leaders this year, followed by Apple next year.

Ken Hyers, Director at Strategy Analytics, said, “We forecast global 5G smartphone shipments will reach a modest 5 million units in 2019. Less than 1 percent of all smartphones shipped worldwide will be 5G-enabled this year. Global 5G smartphone shipments are tiny for now, due to expensive device pricing, component bottlenecks, and restricted availability of active 5G networks.”

Ville Petteri-Ukonaho, senior analyst at Strategy Analytics, added, “Samsung will be the early 5G smartphone leader in the first half of 2019, due to initial launches across South Korea and the United States. We predict LG, Huawei, Xiaomi, Motorola and others will follow later in the year, followed by Apple iPhone with its first 5G model during the second half of 2020. The iPhone looks set to be at least a year behind Samsung in the 5G smartphone race and Apple must be careful not to fall too far behind.”

Neil Mawston, executive director at Strategy Analytics, added, “The short-term outlook for 5G smartphones is weak, but the long-term opportunity remains huge. We forecast 1 billion 5G smartphones to ship worldwide per year by 2025. The introduction of 5G networks, by carriers like Verizon or China Mobile, opens up high-speed, ultra-low-latency services such as 8K video, streaming games, and augmented reality for business. The next big question for the mobile industry is how much extra consumers are really willing to pay, if anything, for those emerging 5G smartphones and services.”

Strategy Analytics provides a snapshot analyses for the outlook for 5G smartphone market in this Insight report: 5G Smartphones : From Zero to a Billion

Strategy Analytics provides a deep-dive into the air-interface technologies that will power phones through 2024 across 88 countries here: Global Handset Sales Forecast by 88 Countries and 19 Technologies : 2003 to 2024

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