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Dutch company Surround Video has released an end-to-end system for making panoramic video recordings.

The company's video system is distinguished by its simplicity and ease of use. The recording and broadcasting of video images only require the user “to connect an internet cable to the device and to an internet connection and you are ready to record and broadcast straight away," according to Marc Groothelm, Managing Director.

The recording system comprises a special camera with six separate lenses: five in a horizontal circle and one pointed upwards. The software in the base unit processes the separate video images to one seamless whole and transmits it to an online distribution platform.

The result is a panoramic video, which is shown inside a virtual sphere. In this sphere, viewers can use a mouse, touch screen or the gyroscope in their smart phone, or tablet to decide where they want to look.

The technique most closely resembles that of Google Streetview, the most important difference being that Surround Video involves panoramic video instead of stills.

"Many producers of TV shows or other forms of video have difficulties providing compelling, additional content online. With panoramic videos they would be able to offer their viewers much more complementary information on already successful 'traditional' formats through their online channels - both live and on demand - about recording locations, storylines or actors. With Surround Video they can fully leverage all interactive functionalities the Internet has to offer," explains Groothelm.

Statistics show that panoramic video material is catching on. People watch panoramic video images three times over on average; a huge difference compared to online traditional video materials.

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Ray Shaw

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Ray Shaw ray@im.com.au  has a passion for IT ever since building his first computer in 1980. He is a qualified journalist, hosted a consumer IT based radio program on ABC radio for 10 years, has developed world leading software for the events industry and is smart enough to no longer own a retail computer store!

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