At Google I/O this year, Google gave a big thumbs-up to GoPro, announcing that the action camera maker would power some of the first 360-degree videos on YouTube. Those videos will be viewable on regular YouTube, but also in virtual reality devices like Google Cardboard and likely others headed to market soon.
Google explained back then how its software would make videos filmed in 360 look good, but now we have some new details on what GoPro brings to the table: A sixteen-camera device called GoPro Odyssey, which will cost $15,000 when it launches in early November.
You won’t be able to buy the Odyssey off store shelves, however. GoPro plans to sell it only to “select content partners” who apply through the camera’s website.
Details on how those content partners will be selected are scant to nonexistent, other than the fact that both Google and GoPro will have a say in the selection. But the limited access program and its verbiage about professional video creators re-raises the question of where the competitive line is between Google VR and Jaunt, a buzzy VR film and camera startup that Google invested in. Previously, it seemed as though Google and GoPro were focusing on a consumer/prosumer crowd, rather than Jaunt’s professional clientele, but now, that doesn’t seem to be the case anymore.
Several virtual reality filmmakers have already been using GoPro cameras to make 360-degree videos on their own, often using 3-D printed camera rigs. The face value of the Odyssey’s 16 cameras — 16 GoPro Hero4s — is only $8,000, so where does the other half of its value come from?
Maybe we’ll find out once the cameras debut and the content creators who buy it get access to Assembler, Google’s VR video pipeline. That, too, is slated to debut later this year.
This article originally appeared on Recode.net.