|ABI notes that early investment has come from the likes of Facebook, Samsung and YouTube, and forecasts growth among various segments of the market.|
ABI forecasts that consumer 360-degree cameras will top four million shipments by 2021, with professional-grade cameras and mid-tier prosumer 360-degree cameras to reach nearly two million shipments.
"The most prominent force driving 360-degree video content and hardware is VR," Eric Abbruzzese, ABI senior analyst, commented.
"And though VR has been experiencing a period of content starvation due to its novelty, small early install base and the high cost of premium VR, support from major content platforms will lessen this for 360-degree video."
ABI states that activity in the 360-degree video market "is abundant across both consumer and enterprise applications".
Among market developments, ABI notes that Nokia has signed a multi-year deal with Disney to use its OZO camera, while GoPro "has its own professional-grade 360-degree multi-camera rig, and will likely release a consumer-grade 360-degree offering in the near future".
Meanwhile, ABI forecasts that nearly 70 million mobile-based VR products, such as Google Cardboard and the Samsung Gear VR, will ship by 2021.
"It is rare to see a culmination of factors as powerful as what's happening for 360-degree cameras and video," Abbruzzese stated.
"Decreasing average selling prices for VR hardware and 360-degree cameras, the possibility for 360-degree camera integration with mobile devices, network and bandwidth improvements for 4K and HDR content that are also enhancing 360-degree video streaming, and a slowing wearable camera market all are creating a rich and promising next step for 360-degree video."