YouTube launches VR180 video format to boost VR adoption

By : |June 23, 2017 0

Acknowledging that every online user is not equipped enough to watch 360-degree videos, Google-owned YouTube has launched a new format for content creators. Christened VR180, it allows producers to shoot videos that are immersive when viewed in a VR headset but will have a traditional perspective when watched on a 2D computer screen or phone.

Google believes that VR180 will make it easier to create virtual reality content. It was created in partnership with the broader VR division at Google and the Daydream team. The format will be high resolution and “look great on desktop and on mobile.” Also, it would be a seamless transition to VR experience when viewed in existing platforms like Cardboard, Daydream, and PlayStation VR.

The VR180 format also supports livestreams, allowing creators and viewers to essentially be in the same room together.

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The VR180 format will allow creators to shoot videos in 180-degrees through VR180 certified cameras. The video format supports videos shot in 180-degrees and do not have a full range field of view. Users can watch the videos which will appear immersive but won’t provide a full field of view and as such users won’t be able to look backwards. The VR videos would be displayed as normal flat, high-resolution 2-D videos on desktops.

Moreover, creators don’t even have to change their production techniques. They can deploy all the methods of a usual shooting routine and come up with videos with a 3D element.

Google says users will be able to edit VR180 video with apps like Adobe Premiere, and that it is also working with Lenovo, LG, and YI to “build cameras from the ground up for VR180,” with the first devices launching this winter. Google is also opening up a certification program for any third-party manufacturer.

Meanwhile, YouTube has reached another milestone. The platform now has 1.5 billion logged in users visiting it every month who watch more than an hour of mobile videos per day.

In a blog post, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki announced the new milestone and said, “Today, I’m pleased to announce that we crossed a big threshold: 1.5 billion logged in viewers visit YouTube every single month. That’s the equivalent of one in every five people around the world! And how much do those people watch? On average, our viewers spend over an hour a day watching YouTube on mobile devices alone.”

Wojcicki also wrote that YouTube Red, the company’s foray into original videos, has launched 37 series that have generated “nearly a quarter billion views.” That’s huge!

The company also announced that YouTube TV would expand to 10 more markets “in just a couple of weeks,” including Dallas-Fort Worth, Washington, D.C., Houston, Atlanta, Phoenix, Detroit, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Miami, Orlando and Charlotte, N.C.

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