San Francisco startup Rylo is launching a 360-degree video camera today that emphasizes smooth videos that are easy to share.
Created by a team of former Instagram and Apple engineers, Rylo has stabilization software and a smartphone app that helps eliminate some of the pains of traditional shooting, editing, and sharing of videos, said Rylo CEO Alex Karpenko, in an email.
“For most people, creating and sharing beautiful video is a lot of work. It requires planning, and most of the time, videos turn out shaky, or you miss the moment entirely,” said Karpenko. “The combination of Rylo’s hardware and software gives anyone the confidence and creative freedom to get the perfect shot every time.”
The company says that Rylo lets you shoot the video and make it perfect after the fact, meaning you don’t have to worry about framing your shot or holding the camera steady to capture a video.
The camera has dual 208-degree wide-angle lenses that can capture everything around you. Videos shot on Rylo can be shared in two formats. You can create a regular high-definition video by selecting a traditionally framed view within the 360-degree footage, or you can share a fully immersive video in 4K 360 degrees. Rylo’s software automatically corrects any distortion typically expected with fisheye lenses.
“Historically, camera innovation has been dependant on upgrading hardware, but the future of innovation for cameras is in the software,” said Chris Cunningham, chief operating officer, in a statement. “The magical thing about camera software is how it closes the gap between what professionals and everyday people can do. That’s why we built software first and designed the camera’s hardware around it.”
With stabilization, Rylo’s software eliminates unwanted camera movement and shakiness, producing smooth videos that have historically only been achieved using expensive, professional-grade stabilization rigs and gimbals, the company said.
The Rylo app reduces editing time. After shooting a video, you plug the camera directly into your phone, and the app automatically opens. You can trim and crop the video and put yourself into the action with a picture-in-picture feature that shows your reaction to the main scene being filmed. Rylo also automatically follows the action if you want it to, as it adjusts the camera’s orientation to keep the action in the frame. You can share video to Instagram, Facebook, or directly with friends and family.
Rivals include GoPro, Vuze, Samsung, and others. Rylo is available for $500 today, and its iOS app is free in the App Store. An Android version is coming soon. It comes with a battery, 16GB microSD card, protective pouch, sync, and charge cables.
Rylo was founded in 2015 and is backed by Accel, Sequoia, SV Angel, and others. The company has raised $15 million and has 21 employees.
“Videos are useless if they’re stuck on your camera or computer never to be seen,” said Sameer Gandhi, partner at Accel, in a statement. “Rylo’s cofounders learned firsthand how complex technology, in the form of simple tools, helps people create pictures worth sharing. Now, they’re bringing this concept to video, and I’m excited to see what people do with it.”