Google's VR180 Creator Makes Publishing VR180 Content Easy

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Tech giant Google introduced the VR180 standard not long ago, and now the company has created a tool that helps owners of VR180-compatible cameras to prepare their footage for sharing and uploading. Simply called VR180 Creator, the app has two main features; it can turn raw footage into the sort of equirect projection that can be viewed in VR, and it can push VR metadata back into a previously edited video file in order to make it viewable. The suite is not a full-featured video editor in and of itself, but has a few rudimentary editing features, and is mainly meant to allow creators to import and export their content so that they can edit it with whatever tools they're familiar with.

The first caveat for this software suite is that it's barebones, but the second one is arguably just as big; there isn't a native Windows version. Google has downloads for Mac and 64-bit Linux. This means that Windows users will have to boot up a Linux virtual machine or install a distribution for dual-booting in order to use this software. Chromebook users, meanwhile, should soon be able to use Linux apps natively. Once you get past all the hurdles and get into the app, the interface is as seen below; you can move clips around, play with angles and adjust a few minor settings, but for the most part, as mentioned earlier, this tool really is meant to allow VR180 creators to put videos into their editing suite of choice and then put them back into a VR-friendly format.

VR180, for those not in the know, is Google's take on affordable, easy-to-use VR. The equipment you need to record in VR180 is cheaper than your average 360 degree camera, and the results are not an immersive, 360-degree video, but rather a 180 degree video that's meant to be viewed while facing toward the front. It's mostly as immersive as normal 360 degree content, but with a focus on what's in front of the viewer, eliminating a lot of processing overhead and the need for special cameras; a pair of fisheye lenses is all most VR180 cameras use.

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