October 9, 2014

HTC Unveils the RE Camera, a Periscope-Like Action Cam Without the Action

HTC Re Camera
HTC is getting into the action camera game with the RE Camera, a super easy-to-use shooter that aims at taking the guesswork out of capturing moments of your life that may not be as action-packed as the ones you'd record on a GoPro.

Don't be mistaken -- the RE Camera isn't an "action camera." It's a "handheld companion camera," which means that its purpose isn't necessarily to accompany its users as they navigate their kayaks through Class V rapids, but instead, perhaps, as they get coffee and clam chowder afterwards. It's an action camera without the action. 

The minimalist design -- no viewfinder, only two buttons -- aims at allowing users to record themselves and their friends a whole lot easier without having to worry about framing or settings. As HTC says, "RE provides distraction-free video and photo capture," and the 146˚ super wide-angle lens makes sure of that. It won't even bother you by making you turn it on -- it turns on automatically when you pick it up. And once you do pick it up, it's designed to fit comfortably in your hand like a little periscope to record your HD video. The RE Camera can be paired to both Android or iOS smartphones with HTC's app for instant streaming, and automatically backs up everything you capture to the cloud.

Features

  • Grip sensor instantly turns on the device when it is picked up.
  • One-hand operation design
  • One tap for photos; One press for videos
  • Time-lapse recording, settings control via your smartphone
  • Android (4.3 and above) and iOS compatible. Seamless integration with your existing photo gallery

Technical Specifications

  • 1080p, 30fps FHD video
  • 720p, 4x slow motion video
  • 16MP, 1/2.3" Sony CMOS sensor
  • 146 degree super wide angle lens with f2.8 aperture for low light usability
  • Rechargeable battery (up to 1hr 50mins of continuous FHD video recording)
  • Weighs 0.14 lbs (66.5 grams)
  • BLE (Bluetooth v4.0)
  • Wi-Fi (802.11a/b/g/n), Wi-Fi Direct
  • 5-pin micro-USB
  • MicroSD Card Slot
  • Tripod Hole
  • Expandable microSD storage

Here are a few stills, courtesy of The Verge:

HTC RE Camera
Credit: The Verge
HTC Re Camera
Credit: The Verge
HTC Re Camera
Credit: The Verge
HTC Re Camera
Credit: The Verge
HTC Re Camera
Credit: The Verge

So, essentially the RE is a simple, easy-to-use personal camera that aims at letting users "focus on the moment" instead of on settings and framing. This is all well and good, but at $200 a pop, it might cause some serious pause amongst those who already use their smartphone cameras to capture and stream everything. Even for people looking for simplicity and ease-of-use, the similarly priced GoPro is no Rubik's Cube.

The RE Camera will go on sale later this month, but it's available for pre-order right now. For more information, check out HTC's website    

Your Comment

12 Comments

I personally think this will be a flop...

October 9, 2014 at 2:22PM, Edited October 9, 2:22PM

0
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Connor Day
Director of Photography
426

It's basically the Flip Camera 2.0

October 10, 2014 at 4:01PM

0
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Why would I buy this instead of just using my smart phone's camera?

October 9, 2014 at 2:42PM

9
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Kurush Bakhtiari
Videographer
86

Sign me up! I love bright colors!

October 9, 2014 at 2:54PM

3
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Josh Paul
Most often DP, Direct or Gaff
1252

How did this get approved? No one's going to buy a standalone phone camera.

October 9, 2014 at 2:56PM, Edited October 9, 2:56PM

28
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Alex Smith
Documentary/Cinematographer
1375

Sooooo... so-so picture, bad sound, no viewscreen, expensive, and it looks like a sex toy.

Yeah. I'll be impressed if they sell more than three of these.

October 9, 2014 at 3:27PM, Edited October 9, 3:27PM

2
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Bryan Howell
Screenwriter, corporate videographer, and indie filmmaker
359

Looks like the mic pickup holes are placed right where your hand covers them up. Who designs this stuff?

October 9, 2014 at 5:48PM

16
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Benton Collins
Camera aimer
364

I cracked up when they superimposed "Cinematic Features" over someone jamming its suction cup onto a window sil. That's gold.

October 9, 2014 at 6:41PM, Edited October 9, 6:41PM

9
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Zack Wallnau
Cinematographer & Tinkerer
630

Hey, that's how they made Citizen Kane.

October 10, 2014 at 1:53PM

17
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Bryan Howell
Screenwriter, corporate videographer, and indie filmmaker
359

If this was 4k with bluetooth connectivity to your phone with the ability to crop live whilst sending the compressed video directly to you phone it would have slightly more appeal to it.

October 11, 2014 at 8:55PM

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Dantly Wyatt
Musical Comedy & Content Creator.
757

These camera have some amazing a-porn-tunities, don't you think?

October 11, 2014 at 11:56PM, Edited October 11, 11:56PM

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Robert Bryant
Writer, Editor, Sound Designer
189

Sooo...$50 in the bargain bin by January, then?
They lined up the release in hopes parents will buy their kid this camera for Christmas, I don't think they thought of it's usability past that.

October 15, 2014 at 11:06AM

0
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Chuck McDowell
1st AC
450