We get a chance to play with EE's new 4G action camera and the results are... disappointing
Above: footage captured with the new 4GEE Action Cam
Network provider EE has taken an odd side-step and released an action cam. Before you turn your nose up, they haven’t jumped on the traditional, GoPro-dominated action camera market. What they have made is actually quite a unique bit of kit.
The new 4GEE Action Cam has the ability to stream 720p video via a 4G connection through the Skeegle app. The camera also has the ability to store video internally to a microSD card, more like a standard action camera.
The headline selling point of the 4GEE Action Cam is its ability to connect to 4G networks and use the data to stream video. Sadly the streaming function isn’t particularly slick. For starters the setup is confusing – given that it uses two different apps and a synced watch, it isn’t exactly something you can just turn on and play with straight out of the box.
What we found was more troubling in use, however, was that the video stream regularly dropped out despite having a strong 4G signal. Many attempts at rebooting the app and checking we still had signal didn’t seem to help much either.
And in any case, one gaping hole in entire concept is that almost all activities that are worth streaming through an action camera, will be in places with absolutely no signal at all!
Worryingly for EE this means that the only unique feature this camera is almost completely worthless. Perhaps in years to come mobile data will be in a place to support this, but we are yet to be convinced.
The internal video quality is reminiscent of the GoPro Hero 2 from 2011, with lens distortion, questionable compression and over saturation. It’s just not a pretty image, especially when you consider that we now have a whole load of great pocket-sized options to choose from these days.
At an asking price of £299, ‘pay as you go’ (including 2GB of data), there is no real reason for anyone serious about video to buy this camera. However, we can’t help but feel a 4G connected camera is a forward thinking idea and this could be something to keep an eye on.