GoPro to Make Kit for Drones and Virtual Reality

May 28, 2015 Updated: June 24, 2015

GoPro’s CEO Nick Woodman announced Thursday that his company was developing a spherical mount that can house six action cameras at once for making virtual reality videos. He also said that GoPro will make its own quadcopter.

“It’s incredible to see our world from new perspectives,” Woodman said at the Code Conference, reports Recode. “We did that with our GoPro cameras, and we see a similar opportunity in the quadcopter market.”

Woodman said that the GoPro drone will come out in early 2016, along with assorted related products. The six-camera mount, a prototype of which was displayed at the conference, will be available in the second half of 2015.

A prototype of the 6-camera spherical mount (GoPro).
A prototype of the 6-camera spherical mount (GoPro).

GoPro’s entry into the virtual reality market was not unexpected. Last month, it acquired the French company Kolor, which creates software that combines separate video recordings to create a panoramic, immersive product. Earlier, Kolor and Intel collaborated to film an interactive, 360 degree music video, the first of its kind on YouTube, where the user can change his perspective by dragging the video left or right.

GoPro’s release of the virtual reality camera mount is well timed, as Oculus VR will release its first commercial headset in the first quarter of 2016.

“When Facebook dropped the gauntlet and acquired Oculus, it sent a message that, ok there’s going to be heavy development and investment in virtual reality,” Woodman said, reports the Verge. “Multicamera enables spherical content.”

Virtual reality has enjoyed a renaissance in the past few years, and the market is now teeming with an array of headsets from established companies like Microsoft, Google, and Samsung.