Canon came out the gate swinging with two new collaborative platforms known as Amlos and Kokomo. The team at Canon graciously took me on a virtual visit to their booth at CES 2022 to show off Amlos, Kokomo, and the companies new 3D VR camera Lens and color me impressed.
Canon's team of engineers have come up with some exciting ideas and solutions for our new reality since the Covid-19 pandemic interrupted life as we knew it. Canon chose not to sit back and whine like an uncle during Thanksgiving about what used to be, they said, "let's create some tech that will reunite uncle whinny pants with his drinking buddies," and that is what Kokomo will allow you to do while using Canon's VR headset or a compatible headset like the Oculus Quest.
Amlos is aimed more at business and creative collaboration, and from what I could see, it could be a game-changer that will make remote work more immersive and intuitive.
With Kokomo you can literally tell it "I want to sit on Santa Monica pier," and bam, you will be there. If your buddy has a VR headset, you can call them, sit together on the pier, and have a hyper-realistic hangout.
Kokomo is a game-changing immersive VR calling platform that almost allows users to reach out and touch their loved ones and friends. The experience will be as close as possible to being right there with someone.
You will need a Canon camera with an R mount so that you can connect the new Canon dual fisheye 3D VR lens. Canon stated, "Kokomo uses a lens that attaches to an R5, but will soon announce expanded compatibility with other Canon cameras and lenses, like the recent Canon RF 5.2mm f/2.8L Dual Fisheye Lens."
Kokomo will become available sometime in 2022 and the company plans to add new destinations, functionalities, and features to the Kokomo app, along with expanded compatibility with Canon cameras. Kokomo was demonstrated using Canon's new RF5.2 dual fisheye lens and I'm not exactly sure you will need one to use the app but, I will report on all the details once we have them.
Amlos takes everything remote workers have been adjusting to over the last two years and tries to make it way more intuitive, realistic, and natural. Amlos makes it so much easier because you feel like you're actually in the same room. It creates an experience that makes gathering your team or other collaborators via video conferencing, painless and easy. They have an actual writers room demonstration you can visit and join here.
Amlos works using a Canon PTZ camera and platform software. It allows you to use different hand gesture controls that we've not seen before. For example, you can point at a whiteboard while the camera changes focus instantly to the board and allow them to switch right back. Also, it allows for a natural view of the entire room that doesn't have the rounded fisheye feel to it like many 360-degree cameras give you.
Amlos can actually focus on multiple sources and grant users a clear view as if they're sitting there, even if the other objects are not within the direct line of sight in the room. It was fascinating to see a partial view of the demo and I can't wait to test it out ourselves.
It feels like someone at Canon said, "it must stink to go to work or school virtually," and decided to fix it because from what I saw briefly, both Kokomo and Amlos create a very immersive and collaborative experience that you have to see for yourself. Kudos to Canon for creating what appears to be game-changing tech not just for now but, going forward.
Canon RF5.2mm F2.8 L Dual Fisheye Lens
Last but certainly not least, Canon introduced the Canon RF5.2mm F2.8 L Dual Fisheye Lens. Originally announced back in October, the lens is just going on sale now. While support is presently limited to the Canon EOS R5 mirrorless camera, I'm curious to find out if Canon plans to expand that to other R series cameras, as soon as I find out, I will let you know. However, I saw some footage shot with this 3D VR lens which you can watch here.
Sadly the video is 2D but, I'm here for it. As always Canon color science was on point and the video footage is stunning and I can't imagine what it is like when using a VR headset that will allow you to enjoy the immersive experience fully.
The Canon RF5.2 lens dual fisheyes allow you to capture stereoscopic 3D 180-degree VR imagery onto a single image sensor. Imagine taking your video projects to a whole new level with this lens. This new lens is meant for content creators and honestly, I can't wait to try and sell my boss on why we need this. I mean, don't you want to fully experience and enjoy your favorite tech journalist in the Metaverse, you know you do.
The Canon RF5.2 F2.8 L Dual Fisheye lens is available to order at B&H for $1,999.