Google has since long been trying to push 360-degree video as much as possible, primarily through YouTube. It seems that now that the company is taking a step back to allow more time to creators and other industries around film making and video before taking the big jump.
Google is now all set to launch VR180, a collaboration between YouTube and Google’s Daydream VR division. Yes, it is exactly what the name suggests. The videos will now NOT stretch all around the viewer but only be at the front. Cameras from companies like Yi, LG and Lenovo will be used in making these new VR180 degree videos.
The basic idea behind this is to remove the divide between regular YouTube and VR videos. Without the aid of a VR set these videos will look like any other flat YouTube videos thereby doing away with the process of creating separate videos for different audiences. The user however can enjoy the same video on a VR headset and immerse in a truly 3D virtual reality experience. Google Cardboard, PlayStation VR and Daydream will all be compatible with the YouTube app on this project.
For us 180-degree VR probably makes quite some sense:
- It is less time consuming to edit.
- Since time is money, it is also less expensive to make.
- Easier to edit on popular video editing platforms like Adobe Premier Pro and Final Cut Pro as it wouldn’t require stitching.
- Easier to shoot. Video makers can now use a man behind the camera and not run for cover as soon as they press record, as with the 360-degree version.
- Videos file sizes would be significantly smaller, allowing viewers buffer-less smooth streaming.
YouTube creators would be able to shoot videos using any VR180 certified camera which would be approximately the same price as a point-and-shoot, when launched. Google Daydream team is working in conjunction with Lenovo, LG and Yi to design the VR180 cameras. The cameras would have two wide angle lenses and shoot beautiful stereoscopic videos. Google is looking to roll out the new cameras this winter.
Meanwhile Adobe is also ramping up its resources to design additional products for Adobe Premier Pro that would allow creators to edit video of this caliber. Since the new cameras will now be quite some time away; Google has announced that creators can apply to loan a VR180 camera from one of its YouTube Spaces; till the new cameras are launched for general consumers.
Only time will tell how good this move is from Google. Let’s hope for the best.
Video Credit: TheVerge