(Mirror Daily, United States) – YouTube, the largest video sharing platform at the moment, has finally made the jump into virtual reality. A recent blog post has announced that Google-owned YouTube now supports VR videos, a new feature that makes 360-degree videos available to all Android users.
The aim is to get the users to feel as if they are actually immersed in the scene they’re watching, and YouTube’s new feature – combined with a Google Cardboard viewer and a smartphone – should do the trick.
YouTube explained in its post how the VR videos work, which they claim are even better than 360-degree videos; the tech uses similar tricks to the ones humans use to perceive the world by mimicking the sense of depth as the user looks around in every direction. Things that should look near are near, and more far away things seem exactly like that: far.
For obvious reasons, not all videos on the platform can offer you that experience. YouTube explains that users need to search for those equipped with VR, two of which are “Hunger Games Experience” and “TOMS Shoes Giving Trip.” Users must then tap on the Cardboard icon, place the smartphone into the Cardboard viewer, and enjoy the experience.
For content creators who wish to have their own videos viewed in VR mode, YouTube encouraged them to check out available technologies that will allow that transition, such as Jump to capture videos.
At the same time, the media company has included another update: Google Cardboard can now be used to watch existing videos, as YouTube has added a new “Cardboard” option directly on the watch page menu. It’s simple: select a video, tap the Cardboard option and set your phone into the Cardboard Viewer; lay back and experience movie theater-style videos.
Kurt Wilms, leading product manager for YouTube VR, said that “YouTube is about democratizing.” The Google-owned company looks for innovative ways to bring new experiences to all viewers. That’s why some of the Google Cardboard viewers can be purchased for only $14.99.
You can get first dibs on the new feature if you head over to Google Play, but some of the users who did that weren’t as impressed as YouTube would like them to be.
While you’re definitely less distracted by anything outside the video you’re currently watching – the “immersive” part of the experience – they say the VR videos don’t come close to what the new 360-degree virtual reality videos can do.
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