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Nikon announces a 360-degree action camera

The KeyMission360 is the first in the company's new line of action cameras

Nikon just announced the D5, a brand new 4K DSLR flagship camera. But the bigger surprise might be the KeyMission 360, which is the company's first ever action camera — and it shoots 360-degree video in 4K. It's the first action camera in what Nikon is calling a new "family" of action cameras, and likely will be the only one that shoots 360-degree video.

The KeyMission 360 is a small square, a bit bigger than the GoPro Hero Session 4, but not as much of a cube. It also, obviously, has lenses on the front and back. It's also shockproof to 2 meters (about 7 feet), and waterproof to 30 meters (100 feet). The camera has electronic vibration reduction, too. Beyond that, Nikon hasn't shared any more details like pricing, availability, battery life, or the field of view of each lens.

The action camera industry has been dominated by GoPro ever since GoPro essentially created the idea in the early 2000s. The only other traditional camera company that makes an action camera is Sony, a company that also serves as GoPro's biggest competition. Other companies like Garmin and TomTom don't try to directly compete, and instead offer more niche features like GPS and accelerometers.

But none of those companies have small action cameras that can shoot 360-degree video. Most high-quality VR is being shot by large camera rigs, and only a few smaller companies like Ricoh and 360fly have released consumer-grade 360-degree cameras. That all leaves a lot of room for competition, especially from big companies like Nikon.

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