— -- Making virtual reality home movies is within reach this year.
Luna 360, a consumer-friendly camera set to be released later this year, provides an accessible way for anyone to shoot 360-degree home movies and export them for viewing on virtual reality devices.
There's no doubt 2016 is the year virtual reality goes mainstream. Jaunt, NextVR and Oculus all grabbed headlines last week at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas for their VR cameras -- and in the case of Oculus -- its $600 consumer headset.
The under-the-radar star though may be the Luna 360 camera, which I had the chance to check out as CES wrapped up last week. The 360 camera is about the same size as a pool ball, making it easy to slip into a purse or pocket.
The camera, which is currently being sold on Indiegogo for $199, is also waterproof, which makes it ideal for anyone wanting to capture an outdoor adventure.
Two fish eye lenses work together to provide 360-degree coverage. Auto-stitching technology then creates a seamless looking image that can be viewed in a virtual reality headset, such as Oculus Rift, Samsung Gear VR or the incredibly affordable Google Cardboard.
A gyroscope built into the six centimeter sphere helps create stable video, which can then be transferred to a user's phone or computer. Luna's accompanying app allows users to crop and edit their videos as well as take two-dimensional photo grabs.
There weren't any noticeable seams of where the videos were pieced together to create a 360-degree experience when using Google Cardboard. The $199 early buyer price is set to reach $299 later this year, according to Memora, the company behind Luna.
While the price point may make it a luxury product for some consumers, it's really the first giant leap of putting virtual reality technology into the hands of a mainstream audience.
"This year is really the first year consumers have access to this," DJ Roller, founder of NExtVR, told ABC News last week. "Virtual reality is a whole other medium, as different as radio was to television."