Insta360 tosses out teasers on an upcoming stabilized, throwable 360 camera

Hillary Grigonis

Insta360’s upcoming action camera is a tossup — literally. Two new teasers peg the camera as a toss-able, stabilized camera, two features that work together to create fly-by camera effects. The company plans to unveil the new camera on Oct. 10.

The first teaser puts the new Insta360 on the same mount as the new GoPro Hero7 and a Sony FDR-X3000 and compares the results after jumping and running with all three cameras. The results show smooth Insta360 footage next to videos that bounce in cadence with the steps. 

The results, of course, look favorable for Insta360, but it’s worth noting the other cameras were action cameras, not other stabilized 360 cameras. With an immersive view, the camera doesn’t need to crop the footage (or steady the lens or sensor) to stabilize — it just needs to stabilize the viewer’s orientation within that 360 view. The 360 stabilization, instead of cropping the video, moves the viewer’s frame to keep the same perspective even after camera movements.

The second teaser is perhaps even more intriguing, showing action shots with camera movement that flies through the scene. A shadow later in the teaser gives away how the effect was created as the shadow throws the camera into the scene. The feature likely works with the stabilization to create that smooth flyby effect in the footage.

The tossed footage also appears to adjust the camera’s view to follow the action, an existing feature on the Insta360 One that converts the footage to a traditional aspect ratio while following the subject around the frame for cinematic movements. The teaser also slows once the camera reaches the action, suggesting some slow-mo capabilities in the upcoming camera.

While Insta360 blurred out the camera in parts of the videos, the teasers still offer a glimpse of what the camera may look like. The camera has a long and lean shape, closer to a Ricoh Theta or the Insta360 One than the small rectangular action cameras compared in the first teaser. Hopefully, the toss teaser entails a durable body.

The camera doesn’t yet have a name or complete specifications, though viewers can make several guesses based on the footage. The videos end by teasing a “10.10” date.

Insta360 already has the smartphone add-on Nano and Air cameras, but the shape and the designation as an action camera most resembles the company’s current Insta360 One, which is equipped with FlowState stabilization.