Ball Camera Captures 360° Panoramas When Tossed into the Air

The ‘Throwable Panoramic Ball Camera‘ is an awesome new camera developed by a group of computer science researchers led by Jonas Pfeil.

The camera is thrown into the air and captures an image at the highest point of flight – when it is hardly moving. The camera takes full spherical panoramas, requires no preparation and images are taken instantaneously. It can capture scenes with many moving objects without producing ghosting artifacts and creates unique images.

It uses 36 separate 2-megapixel mobile phone camera modules, which are mounted in an enclosure that’s padded with foam. Photographs can then be downloaded to a computer via USB and viewed in a spherical panoramic viewer.

Here’s a video demonstration of the camera in action:

The quality of the cameras obviously isn’t the best at this point, but the concept is pretty awesome. In the future we might be snapping 360-degree panoramas in high-resolution using a tiny pocket-sized ball camera!

Throwable Panoramic Ball Camera [Jonas Pfeil]

Thanks for the tip, @OcasoProtal!

  • Graham Case

    They really need to use a neutral coloured foam for the ball part. All the pictures in their demo have a distinct green cast!

    Neat concept, but may be something for the “forgettable” pile.

  • Dr. gut. Chris


    Taking a look over the neighbor‘s fence will never be the same again :P

  • SLRuser

    It won’t take long for much better cameras to be placed in this thing.  Doesn’t require much skill but I’m sure someone will find some really cool applications for this. Great idea!

  • Abel Flores

    white balance?

  • Daniel Hoherd

    ƒ sweet!

  • Daniel Hoherd

    ƒ sweet!

  • Through Painted Eyes

    1) Carry this with you 24/7.
    2) Sift through content and crop pictures.
    3) Choose focus, white balance, etc etc in post.

    BAM! Everyone’s an amazing photographer.

  • patrick dinneen

    looks like a nice novelty but exactly that; a novelty that’ll very quickly wear off

  • Anonymous

    Add on-board processing and wireless
    Toss into room full of enemies. 


    = Kill shot.

  • Abc123

    as for applications, 3d artist have been on a holygrail type quest for a spherical camera. used to make reflection maps and environmental back for 3d models

  • BensonixOfTwitter


  • Rakimages

    Very cool where can I buy one?

  • Chrispy

    Can’t believe there are so many people ready to bag it.  Is that a case of “Gee I didn’t think of it so I won’t give credit where credit is due”.  It’s a clever idea.

  • ray y

    Maybe it can save life, make a small version of this and throw in earthquake devastated areas and… see if someone is trapped…  and… never get the ball back..