HTC Desire Eye and Re camera announced
HTC Desire Eye and Re camera presented at Double Exposure.
Today was the day HTC would be holding the Double Exposure event in New York city, and we were expecting to see the HTC Desire Eye, the ReCamera and the HTC One M8 Eye to be revealed. We were not left disappointed after the event was over, although an HTC One M8 Eye does not exist, at least not yet. The HTC Double Exposure event was more show than information, to be honest, with a few models strutting up and down on the stage, with seemingly no purpose than to take selfies. Other than that, the event went down ok, with some internet connection problems burdening the reporters.
The main attractions of the event were the HTC Desire Eye smartphone and the HTC Re camera, but the company also announced a new photography platform called Experience Eye, which will be available for Android and iOS, as well as launched Zoe for Android and announced that it would be available for iOS, too, next month. The HTC event was short, compared to Apple and Samsung events and there was a sort of gloomy atmosphere around – maybe because HTC is trying to get back in the saddle. Nonetheless, we finally have two new HTC devices and two new HTC apps to get our hands on.
Let’s get the Re camera launch out of the way, because that’s the most interesting part of the show. The HTC Re camera is a small, pipe-like device that can take 16 MP photos and shoot 1080p videos with the press of a button. The device only has two buttons, a start and a stop button, and doesn’t have a viewfinder. The main idea behind the Re camera is that users should be able to capture the moment at the press of a button without having to keep their smartphones blocking their views all the time. It’s a good idea actually. The HTC Re camera isn’t anything like the GoPro sports camera, but it does suggest that it’s a more domestic version of it.
The Re Camera turns on when you grab the device and you can press one of the buttons to take a snapshot, or long-press the same button to start filming, press again to stop. The second button serves as a slow-motion capturing button. If you think you would like to see what you are shooting or filming, HTC will be releasing an app too, compatible with Android and iOS that will allow you to see what the Re sees and adjust and edit your shots and videos. The Re camera can be mounted the same way any other similar device can, so you can use it in a baby cradle, on a bike, on your shoulder, on your head or in your parachute. It’s also waterproof and has some kind of image stabilization as well as a wide-angle lens. Developers will have access to an SDK for the Re camera so you might see other apps use the Re in the future, as well.
The other highlight of the show was the HTC Desire Eye camera setup, with a dual 13 MP shooter on the rear and another dual 13 MP shooter on the front, both equipped with wide angle lenses and LED flash. This new camera setup was used to promote HTC’s new platform, the Experience Eye, through which you can take simultaneous shots with both cameras and insert yourself into the rear shot from the front shot. It’s an interesting app and HTC has emphasized the work developers have put into the platform.
You can now stabilize and compose your shot and the HTC Desire Eye, using the Eye Experience app, will automatically snap it. Or you could say cheese for a photo or action for a video. Simple as that. There also a share screen feature, that hasn’t been detailed too much at the event, but we’ll update you on that feature later. The Eye Experience was originally launched with the HTC Desire 820, but now the app is being made available for almost everyone with a pretty updated phone. Your HTC phone will be automatically upgraded with the Eye Experience in the following weeks.
The HTC Desire Eye is waterproof and has a polycarbonate unibody chassis and features a 5.2 inch full HD screen. We didn’t actually expect this, but yet, the HTC Desire Eye features the legendary BoomSound speakers with an added benefit of smaller bezels surrounding it. A snapdragon 801 CPU is powering the HTC Desire Eye backed by 2 GB RAM, so it’s not exactly a mid-range phone, but not a flagship either, standing somewhere in between.
While the HTC Double Exposure event had its awkwardness, it still came up victorious with the HTC Desire Eye and the Re camera as well as the intensive work the company has put into its new Experience Eye, Zoe and Re applications. We will surely find out more about the new devices later this month, with a possible release date for the HTC Desire Eye and HTC Re camera.