Following its launch at the end of last year, HTC’s RE camera didn’t garner quite the attention the company had likely hoped for, but I think the arrival of Twitter’s new live streaming app Periscope might be able to breathe new life into this oddball gadget.
In case you’ve somehow missed it (and I commend you, because it’s been grabbing headlines everywhere), Periscope launched this week, representing Twitter’s move to stake its claim on the live streaming app market. Meerkat, its biggest rival right now doesn’t have a potential partner in the world of life-logging/action cameras as it stands and that brings us to the potential of the RE.
Whilst HTC won’t dole out exact numbers, the company did tell Focus Taiwan that it was on track to sell 20,000 RE cameras before the end of last year, but that’s still a notable way off its minimum total target of 400,000 units before the latter half of 2015, at which point HTC will decide whether or not its successor, the RE 2 is worth pursuing.
With this in mind, I feel as though there’s a place for the RE nestled amongst the fast-growing world of live streaming apps. Its most recent software update added the ability to live stream directly to YouTube, but Periscope’s mobile roots feel like a far more fitting platform in which the RE could create a niche for itself.
If it isn’t already apparent, the compact and inoffensive design of the RE just so happens to bestow it with the ideal proportions and silhouette of a, you guessed it, periscope. Pair that with the technology and time HTC has already poured into developing the product and you’ve got the perfect embodiment of the app’s intentions in a small, relatively inexpensive device.
Picture Periscope-branded RE cameras on sale at concerts, sporting events, even demonstrations and protests; the PeREscope (you’re welcome HTC) has real potential, at least in my eyes.
The RE brand is HTC’s push beyond mobile and its two other most notable products; the Vive VR headset and the Grip activity tracker both launched with established partners in the form of Valve and Under Armour respectively. The RE camera missed out on a partner at launch, but perhaps fate knew the ideal pairing would eventually make an appearance and from where I’m standing, that partner has finally arrived in Periscope.
Do you rate the RE? Could it carve a niche for itself as the live streaming camera? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.