Google Is Launching New Cameras With 180-Degree VR Video Support

Tomas Mccoy
June 24, 2017

Wojcicki noted that YouTube now boasts 1.5 billion logged-in users per month (on top of all the views that come from viewers who aren't logged in), and that the platform has seen a 4x increase in live video in the previous year.

With a view toward making virtual reality (VR) more accessible and affordable, YouTube revealed a new video format called VR180. The company is also lending VR180-enabled cameras to eligible creators through the YouTube Spaces. With these anyone will be to set up and film VR180 videos, and livestreams will be easy to upload to further notes that soon creators will be able to edit using familiar tools like Adobe Premiere Pro.

The format is fixed to a 180-degree view rather than supporting full 360-degree video. But Google thinks that 180-degree VR videos can lead to even more immersive experiences.

Google has also produced a playlist of VR180-ready videos on YouTube, which you can watch here.

The limited field of view does have its advantages, such as providing viewers with a sharper 4K resolution directly in front of them, smaller file sizes, and less concern over stitching and parallax issues. However, 360-degree videos are expensive to make and are time-consuming as well. Google says VR180 cameras with a "point-and-shoot" feel are on the way from YI, Lenovo, and LG, with the first ones out before the end of the year.

So, for example, a YouTube creator won't have to worry about capturing what is behind the camera, but can just shoot straight forward as they normally would. We don't know what these cameras will look like in terms of design, though Lenovo has released a line drawing of its upcoming VR180 format camera. Google has also confirmed that the Daydream team is working with several manufacturers to build cameras from the ground up for VR180 video format. With almost 75 percent users focusing on only what is in front of them, the new VR180 format should make sense for them. That update will begin to show up in Latin America in a couple of weeks, followed by a rollout in the U.S.

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