Thursday, October 1, 2015

Facebook is Preparing us for Virtual Reality

Capture from Star Wars 360 Video
Last week's announcement by Facebook that they are adding support for 360 degree video and the release of the 360 degree Star Wars video are certainly intended to help prepare us for the upcoming release of the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset.

I watched the video on my desktop computer which is a different experience than a fully immersive headset. You can look in any direction and see what is happening by dragging the screen with the mouse, but I am sure it would feel more natural if the direction of view happened automatically when I turned my head.

However, I question whether video can ever be a fully immersive experience. While it is interesting to be able to look in different directions, in the real world you could also change the speed and direction of travel. Changing the direction of view only leaves me with the feeling of being an observer rather than a participant.

What are your feelings about the 360 degree video capability?

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