Virtual Reality and 360-degree video seem to be the "next big thing" right now. We've seen a number of virtual reality headsets come out recently like the Gear VR, the LG 360 VR, HTC's Vive, and Oculus' Rift. All of these are in different price ranges and also provide a very different experience. With VR, you can not only play games, but also view video in 360-degrees, which is great for making it really feel like you are there. Already, there has been a few great videos available on YouTube, since they began supporting 360-degree video last year. Including one that took you on a tour of the white house at Christmas time. But now, YouTube is going a step further.
Today the company announced that they are now doing live streams in 360 degrees. So if you have a 360-degree camera, you'll be able to create a live stream with it on YouTube. This is a pretty big deal, as it adds a whole new dimension to your video. Users can really feel like they are there, because they can turn their head and see what's to the left, right, behind them and even above them. To promote this new feature, Google will be live streaming select artist performances at Coachella this week in 360-degrees on YouTube. Additionally, all of the YouTube Space around the world will be outfitted with 360-degree cameras and other tech needed for doing live streams in 360-degrees. This way, YouTubers around the world can see how well it works.
That's not all that is being announced today from YouTube, in terms of virtual reality. The video platform is also launching support for spatial audio for on-demand videos. Spatial Audio allows you to hear the sound the way you would in real life. The way this is done is by factoring in distance, intensity, and the position of the sound source. So moving around, the sound will change, and it makes you feel even more immersed in the video.
Google Cardboard did add support for spatial audio a few months ago, so it's not entirely surprisingly to see it come to YouTube as well.