First Look: Premium, Programmable Action Camera From V.I.O.

stream vio.jpg

Longtime “helmet camera” users will recall V.I.O. and its original wearable, “point-of-view” units from more than a decade ago. Though overshadowed by GoPro and other players, the brand, founded in Michigan, is still around and is now based in Minneapolis.

This month, V.I.O. releases a long-awaited camera that’s highly modular. It comes in a few configurations, and in addition to normal use (on a helmet, mounted on a kayak hull), the Stream HD can be plugged into a notebook computer via USB or even tethered right to a circuit board.

camera head.jpg

Tiny camera head with interface on back for various configurations

It starts at $499.99 for the USB version. A battery pack Stream (pictured at top of article), which you can use in the outdoors or for action sports, starts at $599.99. For these premium prices you get a tiny camera head (80 × 36mm) with a waterproof, dustproof and shockproof body.

An open API (application programming interface) gives commercial integrators and at-home DIY’ers an option to build custom applications and software interfaces to run the Stream camera in a variety of situations. V.I.O. is marketing the camera to outdoors adventurers and action sports audiences as well as law enforcement, medical, and military markets.

stream cameras.jpg

Battery pack setup (left), USB mode, and a circuit board to connect camera to a computer

WiFi is built in, and the camera is programed with an RTSP (Real Time Streaming Protocol) to enable it to stream full HD 1080p video wirelessly or via IP. If customized into a system, the camera can be controlled remotely over a browser-based device, from a notebook computer to a tablet or phone.

The Stream Camera comes out this month. We look forward to testing it outdoors soon. For now, see technical specs and camera component options on the V.I.O. Stream page.

—Stephen Regenold

Stream HD Camera vio.jpg

Control Stream via custom-built apps on a phone

Comments