Billed as the world's first intelligent wearable camera and one that will herald a new form of photography, the OMG Life Autographer is always on, ready to capture a visual memento, as the brand hopes to tap into the emerging consumer market for wearable devices and for life blogging.
Worn around the neck or clipped onto clothes, the diminutive device boasts a 136° wide-angle lens (so that everyone or everything is always in shot) and can take up to 2000 shots a day. And because it has 8GB of built-in storage, it can hold up to 280,00 images at any one time.
"Autographer provides people with a new method of photography, Autography. Autography generates greater memories by capturing images of 'real life' - rather than 'posed life'. People can completely enjoy and experience the moment without having to pause to take photos. This is perfect for live music events, more sentimental moments such as children's first steps and much more. Autographer ensures that the best moments which may have otherwise been missed are completely captured. Over time, these moments gain sentimental value and with Autographer you can ensure you have both the memory and image to hold onto," says the company's head, Simon Randall, who also claims that OMG Life's research shows that, in the UK at least, consumers who want wearable technology want it in order to catalogue their lives (30%) and to aid their memory (28%).
Photos are taken automatically, triggered by changes in light and brightness; temperature; motion of objects in front of it; and the speed -- i.e., how quickly or slowly -- the device itself is traveling. It also has built-in GPS so that all images are also geotagged.
The Autographer was announced in 2012 and was expected to launch in November but it has taken the company a further eight months to bring the camera to market. Despite the holdup, it is still the first wearable ‘smart' photographic device to hit shelves. In October, a Kickstarter campaign launched for the Memoto, a similarly worn camera that does away with the Autographer's myriad sensors in favor of simply taking a photo every 30 seconds and posting it to a web-based timeline. It hit its funding target in a matter of days but is not expected to officially go on sale until later this summer when it will retail for $279.
In comparison, the Autographer officially goes on sale in selected European markets and in the US on July 30, priced at £400 ($600), which is rather a lot, considering that a ‘prosumer' DSLR with all of the bells and whistles can be snapped up for the same price or even less.
Then there is another issue, and it's the same one surrounding Google Glass, namely invasion of privacy. And unlike Google Glass, which can inadvertently capture images of someone covertly, the Autographer's raison d'être is to randomly take images.
The creators of both devices also highlight the benefit of not having to fumble with a smartphone or camera in order to capture a special moment and the ability to photograph an event as it unfolds with people in their natural state, however there's a possibility that people will not be their normal selves and will instead seem rather guarded around a gadget that at any moment could take a photograph of them.