Facebook users recently gained the ability to post 3D models and scenes for friends and fans to rotate and look at freely, and now that ability has been expanded with support for the popular gITF 2.0 file type. Support for this standard brings a range of new abilities, such as detailed textures and lighting. Many tools that create such files can now upload them directly to Facebook, with the 3D scanner on certain Sony phones being a prime example. Any lighting profile, including no lightmaps, is now supported across a wide range of formats, though gITF 2.0 will be the easiest for users to simply drag and drop directly into Facebook. On top of sharing gITF 2.0 content in actionable posts, users can even bring the content into Facebook Spaces to share with friends in a gathering, where a real sense of scale can be attained. This means that objects and even entire scenes can become set pieces in Spaces meetups, making the possibilities of the platform essentially limitless, outside of objects with special properties that would allow for interactivity.
The gITF format was developed by Khronos Group, the pioneers of the Vulkan 3D API, and is made to be easy to use, compact, and widely compatible with a large number of cross-platform tools. The second iteration was introduced in March of 2017, and its arrival put gITF on the map as the default for a number of tools. Microsoft's Paint 3D, built into the Creators' Update of Windows 10, is probably the most ubiquitous of the tools and interfaces that default to using the gITF 2.0 format, and now models and scenes made with those tools can be put up on Facebook without any additional processing.
Going forward, Facebook plans to pick up support for an even wider selection of 3D file formats. Perhaps more importantly, however, Facebook is going to be working to make it easier for users to share AR and VR content on the platform by increasing the number of ways that 3D content can be imported and users can interact with it. There are no definite dates set for any of the steps on this journey, according to Facebook's press release, but support for the rich and highly universal gITF 2.0 standard is certainly a step in the right direction.