Now Smartphone Makers Are Trying To Make GoPro Competitors

HTC has unveiled its first standalone camera, the HTC Re, and it’s meant to serve as a GoPro-style camera for the everyday person.

The 16-megapixel camera will sell for $US199 and will initially be available through and Best Buy. It will be sold on Amazon at at AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon Wireless stores in time for the holiday season.

While GoPro cameras are typically used while moving and are often marketed towards extreme sports enthusiasts, surfers, and bicyclists, the HTC Re is meant to capture everyday life in scenarios where you wouldn’t want to bring your phone.

The tiny periscope-shaped camera allows you to snap photos with the press of a button. There are three main things you can do with the Re: tap the button on the back to take a still, long press it to record a video in 1080p, or front press the button on the front of the device to record in slow motion.

At first glance, you would never guess the HTC Re is a camera. There’s no viewfinder, which means there’s no way to immediately see your photos once they’re taken. HTC claims that once you snap a few photos with the Re, you’ll get used to the scope of the lens and won’t have a hard time lining up your shots.

HTC says that eventually you’ll be able to live stream footage from the camera directly to YouTube.

When you do want to see your photos, you can look at them through your phone or computer. There’s a setting that tells the camera to automatically back up to Google Drive, Dropbox, or your phone via the Re app when you’re connected to your home’s Wi-Fi network. From the app, you can download photos directly to the camera roll. The Re app will be available for iOS and Android when it launches.

If you don’t want to transfer them wirelessly, you can also transfer photos through a hard wired USB connection too.

Lisa EadiciccoHTC’s Desire Eye phone next to the Re

The camera comes with 8GB of storage, but that’s expandable up to 128GB via a microSD card.

HTC says the Re can automatically detect when you’re gripping it since it has capacitive sensors built in. It’s IPx7 certified, so you’ll be able to dunk it in one meter of water for up to 30 minutes without worrying about inflicting any damage.

The camera will come in blue, white, and a coral pink colour, but HTC says there may be more options to come.

The Re is certainly light, portable, and simple, but it might be hard to resist the urge to immediately check and see how the photo came out. Although HTC says it should be easy, it’s unclear how simple it will be to frame shots without being able to look through some type of viewfinder.

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