THETA V Plug-in API Documentation and SDK with Sample Code Available

THETA V API documentation and SDK - including sample plug-in - is now available from RICOH!

Details around early beta development have not been announced, but the team can help you get started with a discussion on requirements to get involved. You will need your THETA V to be unlocked by RICOH. Please leave your comments below, DM @jcasman on this forum, or email me directly at

Here’s an extensive Plug-in SDK and API Documentation Overview YouTube video by @codetricity. Great place to start if you’re considering doing development with the V. Craig talks through documentation and what’s available.


The RICOH THETA V is a special 360° camera that allows a wide range of options for developers integrating 360° technology into their products and services. Previous models supported the Open Spherical Camera API and many apps have been developed using smartphones to control the camera and do interesting things. Companies in Construction, Automobiles, Museums, Real Estate, Law Enforcement and more have implement 360° products and solutions based on the RICOH THETA.

For business purposes, the THETA V provides multiple benefits:

  • Faster time between pictures (8 seconds for the THETA S versus 4 seconds for the THETA V)
  • Faster file download times than the THETA S (7 seconds versus 1 second, even at the lower 2.4Ghz WiFi connection to the mobile app)
  • Picture-taking speed of the V is 3x faster than the S (5 seconds versus 15 seconds). With the V, 4 seconds is the stitching time and 1 second is the transfer time. For the THETA S, 7 seconds is transfer time, and 8 seconds is stitching time.
  • Downloading speed via WiFi using 5Ghz is even faster and very useful when downloading large 4K videos

The THETA V is now Android-based which makes it very similar to programming for an Android phone. Here is a more complete explanation of THETA V development environment. It still continues to support the Open Spherical Camera API as well.

The documentation and SDK will make building your first plug-in, tuned specifically to your needs, much easier!

I’m interesting in unlocking my device and creating some plugins. Can you tell me more?

1 Like

Hi @jjj,

Great to hear from you! Please send email to and we can discuss details. Currently, we need to physically get your THETA V to be able to unlock it. Where are you located? Also, can you tell me more about what you do for work and what type of project you are interested in building?


@jcasman do you know if the developers like @jjj will be able to do this remotely soon with the software unlock tool that you’re using? Currently, the tool is in beta, but I think the developers will get access to that tool, right?

I believe and expect that as part of the Partner Program - expected to be announced this month according to RICOH’s VRLA presentation - that developers will be able to unlock their V’s “over the air,” meaning they will have access, after having applied and been accepted to the program, to software that allows them to unlock their own V. I do not know the timing of this.

So, if @jjj can’t get you the camera to unlock physically, he should be able to do it over the air later this month, right? In the meantime, if he’s in Silicon Valley, he can unlock it earlier through you?

According to the video, the Partner Program is being announced this month. I do not know if the over the air capability will be available immediately or not. Yes, if he’s in Silicon Valley, I’m happy to connect and arrange to meet to do it directly.

I would assume it has over the air capability or there would seem to be no other way to get the camera into developer mode for the thousands of developers that will give it a try. Even if there’s only a few hundred developers initially, there would need to be a way to unlock 200 cameras easily and put it into developer mode.

Maybe you know, but you can’t say because it hasn’t been announced?

IMO, we should have a better message to developers that aren’t in Silicon Valley, even if it is a private note to each developer that inquired with a better explanation of the process.

BTW, there’s been several updates to the plug-in development community guide.

One of the big changes is that we added the full source code and pre-compiled apk for the “Fast Bracketing” Plug-in made by Ichi Hirota. The plug-in takes pictures in dual-fisheye format to reduce the time taken for bracketing 3 pictures from 12 seconds down to 3 seconds.

It achieves the time-savings by saving the images as dual-fisheye. To convert to equirectangular, you need to use another application he developed.

There’s a video scheduled to be published today that shows how to use the Fast Bracketing plug-in. We’ll be meeting with Ichi on Thursday to discuss his plans to commercially distribute the stitching library and calibration application that is needed for end-users to make use of the Fast Bracketing plug-in. After the meeting, we’ll update the guide again.

I’m actually in Hawaii, so getting together in person would be a bit of a challenge. I’m a private developer with experience on Android, iOS, and of course all the major desktop platforms. I did actually figure out how to put the theta in Android fastboot mode and gain the ability to adjust boot settings and potentially directly update the firmware from an image. Unfortunately this mode doesn’t allow read access or direct adb access. I’m currently frustrated by the lack of recovery options for theta V due to the removal of mass-storage mode with the move to an Android base. So my first desire is to work up some file system recovery techniques. Perhaps similar to the existing usb off loading but with the ability to recover accidentally deleted images. From there I’ll see where the inspiration takes me.


Aloha and thank you for the update on your project. @jcasman and I will try and ask some people at Ricoh that we know and try to get you more information on a timeline for a process to help you.

@jjj Thanks for those details, I’m seconding what @codetricity just said, will try to get you some better info shortly.

1 Like

I think there’s a lot of interest in file system recovery tools.

Also, here’s a short video showing the “Fast Bracketing” plug-in in use. Shows how fast 3 images can be taken.

@jjj just wanted to make sure that you saw the announcement for the plug-in partner program. You can sign up online now and then get access to a software tool to unlock your camera. Let us know if you have any questions.

RICOH THETA Plug-in Partner Program Goes Live

1 Like

Thanks! I saw, registered, and was accepted. Now looking for/waiting on instructions to enable adb. I have my Android studio ready to go and a clone of the sdk repo. I hope they announce more soon!

Update: got it. Update to firmware 2.30.1 and desktop app 3.5.0, the use the menu to enter dev mode. After that adb connects, vysor works, and we’re off to the races…


@jjj thanks for the update. I just installed 3.5 as well.

I see that there is now a menu item for developer mode.


I updated this process in the Plug-in Application Development Community Guide

I also reorganized the structure of the dev guide.

1 Like

I initially had problems finding the link to join the partner program as it was buried at the bottom of the page. Here’s the link.

Join Plug-in Partner Program

1 Like