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March 14, 2007 – "Imagine combining your love for bouncing balls and your obsession with taking pictures into one," states design website SatuGo.com. Two designers in Denmark have designed a SatuGo rubber ball camera that users can throw for image capture. Although a prototype has not yet been developed, the designers are currently in negotiations to have the throw-able camera commercialized for the market, said SatuGo Interactive Designer Mads Ny Larsen in a statement to DigitalCameraInfo.com.
The idea blossomed after Larsen and Industrial Designer Eschel Bjorholm Jacobsen realized that tourists were bogged down with too much camera equipment and were spending entirely too much time setting up their SLRs or compact cameras on tripods.
"One of the first ideas we thought of was, ‘Why can’t we make a camera you can place in the air and it just hangs there?’" said Larsen.
Instead of trying to defy the laws of gravity, the designers came up with the concept of SatuGo, a 3 megapixel sphere-like camera using rubber material that consumers can throw into the air. Similar to a hand grenade, according to Larsen, users would pull a cord and free the camera from a cradle.
Although Larsen was not able to give many details of the technology behind the camera design, the SatuGo website states that it would have a shutter speed of 1.25/6000 of a second, 1GB of internal memory, and measurements of 6.5 cm x 2.5 inches in diameter. Although primarily serving as a still camera device, SatuGo could also function as a webcam and a mobile memory device. The camera would not have a LCD screen or a picture counter, ensuring the "hidden treasure" nature of the device, according to Larsen.
The target audience for the SatuGo camera is anyone with a "playful soul," according to Larsen. "It does not matter if it is kids, extreme sports people, business men, or people with a keen interest of gadgets," said Larsen. "Just as long as they see the fun in the idea, we believe it will sell," he said.
The SatuGo designers are currently in negotiations with a European manufacturer, although no details on pricing or a production date have been announced.
Photo illustrations courtesy of SatuGo.com.