The folks at HTC dropped off a RE Camera for me to play with.
It’s a weird looking camera. Almost like a periscope and since there’s no viewfinder my kids and I just spent a lot of time staring it and waiting for it to do something.
Pro tip: It doesn’t do anything if you just stare at it.
The RE Camera is pretty cool though if you’re looking for something between your phone and a GoPro. It’s really a perfect camera to share with kids because it’s near impossible to break (please don’t interpret that as a challenge) and you don’t turn it off or on.
I don’t have to tell you that there’s a lot of fun to be had with a camera. I certainly don’t need to tell you that a fisheye lens multiplies the fun.
The RE Camera and it’s two buttons allow you to take pictures, take video, take time lapse video and to take slow motion video. We tried taking slow motion video with the airsoft guns and some pellets but that didn’t work well. First the kids kept shooting the camera and knocking it over and then the pellets were just too fast to be seen. So we went from bullets to poodles. Here’s Junior all slowed down (but not bathed so please don’t judge me harshly).
There are two buttons on the RE Camera. The silver one acts as a shutter. Click it once and it snaps a photo, hold it down a few seconds and it becomes a video camera that you click to start and click to stop. The white button allows you to do slow motion video or timelapse video – all through your app.
When the RE is sitting on your counter it’s off, when you pick it up the grip sensor turns it on so you don’t have to worry about having a camera ready. It’s always ready and the battery isn’t draining.
The RE is water resistant and with one additional accessory it’s water proof. Everything is universal on it like the 5 pin micro USB.
Here’s the deal. The RE is a fun camera at $199. It stores images to the cloud that you can download from your ios or android phone. It’s not going to dazzle you like your Canon or Nikon so camera snobs need not apply. It will travel well with you, it will get wet, get dropped, get giggled at and record your vacation without taking up space in your luggage or taxing your skills. It’s the point and shoot your kids want because the photos are a bit of a surprise but the lens is wide enough that you never miss the shot.
Connecting the RE to an iPhone is a bit of a hit or miss proposition. I am guilty of letting my electronics get below 10% battery and the RE gets uncooperative when that happens. You need to connect the RE to your iPhone via bluetooth to see the images. This is great because it saves precious memory on phones and other devices but also a bit of a bummer if you’re used to seeing your photos instantly.