Google's VR180 Initiative Sacrifices 360 Degrees For High Quality Video


VR is more expensive to produce, Wojcicki said, so YouTube has been working on the new format with the Daydream team and partners like LG and Lenovo to produce a new, lower-cost VR180 camera in the $200-$300 range.

But back to the stats: "Today, I'm pleased to announce that we crossed a big threshold: 1.5 billion logged in viewers visit YouTube every single month", wrote CEO Susan Wojcicki in a follow-up blog post published this morning.

There are already a handful of VR180 videos on YouTube featured by Google itself, though they look just like regular YouTube videos on browsers.

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You have to face forward while watching them, meaning you can't turn and look back, but they'll still be immersive when you watch them through the YouTube app with a compatible headset, such as Google Cardboard, Google Daydream, or PlayStation VR. VR180 is a simpler format, and it will soon be supported in video editors such as Adobe Premiere Pro. From vlogs, to makeup tutorials to music videos - your videos will work great in VR. Creators who want to test VR180 capabilities early can apply to test drive a VR180 camera from YouTube Spaces around the world.

Google is also opening up a certification program so other manufacturers can create VR180 cameras-starting with Z CAM. YouTube just announced VR180 a format that is created to make 3D content a lot easier to access.

Google said the above move is aimed at simplifying the entire concept of 360-degree videos in the first place. You can't find VR180 videos yet on YouTube but if you're a creator, feel free to ask Google and loan a VR180-enabled camera. The VR videos would be displayed as normal flat, high-resolution 2-D videos on desktops. The launch of the new format is also accompanied by similar efforts to launch suitable hardware to actually shoot the video. "When we compare that [metric] to TV, people - in some countries like the USA - watch up to four hours per day, so we think there's lots of room to get people to watch even more YouTube", said the CEO.