YouTube dives into VR, live-streaming with 360 video

It's launching live-streaming 360-degree video for desktops, iOS and Android

Virtual reality and live-stream videos are hot right now and YouTube doesn't want to be left out of the game.

The Google-owned video-sharing website announced today that it is launching live streaming of 360-degree videos - you know, those videos where you can see all around, as well as up and down, in the scene.

The company also is unveiling spatial audio for on-demand YouTube videos, giving users a sense of distance, depth and intensity of sound.

360-degree video YouTube

YouTube today announced live streaming 360-degree video, as well as spatial audio.

"Whether it's a sporting event or a concert or even a family gathering, all of us have had the feeling of wanting to be somewhere we couldn't," wrote Neal Mohan, YouTube's chief product officer, wrote in a blog post. "But these days, virtual reality and 360-degree video can help get you one step closer to actually being at those places and in those moments. Today, we're taking immersive video even further with 360-degree live streaming on YouTube."

Viewers can watch the live stream and 360-degree videos on a tablets, desktop computers or smartphones -- either Apple's iPhones or phones powered by Google's Android. To get the full-on VR effect, you'll need to watch through a virtual-reality headset, like Google's dirt-cheap Cardboard goggles. Cardboard is made of cardboard, which users fold into a headset to hold a phone running the video.

For the full 360-degree effect, users, will need a virtual reality headset.

YouTube's move follows those of other tech industry giants.

Google has its Cardboard virtual reality goggles. Facebook has Oculus Rift, which the company inherited after buying the virtual reality company for upwards of $2 billion.

At Facebook's F8 developer conference last week, Yaser Sheikh, a Facebook Oculus VR researcher and associate professor at Carnegie Mellon University, told a keynote audience that the future of social networking will be focused on social VR.

"We are still in the very early days of marketing virtual reality," said Jeff Kagan, an independent industry analyst. "That means it's important for all the players to stick their flag in the ground as one of the first in the space. This is YouTube putting its flag in the ground."

For something that could grow quickly, today's big tech players need to get onboard now so they're not left behind.

"If they do this, they will remain one of the early leaders," noted Kagan. "If they don't do things like this, they could fade away and be replaced by other leaders."

Rob Enderle, an analyst with the Enderle Group, said the YouTube announcement is good news for virtual reality users since there really isn't a lot of content available yet.

"Live video is a very quick way to generate content, showcase the value of the platform, and provide an experience far closer to actually being there," he added. "This makes YouTube a stronger destination for those that have early VR gear and are in search of content."

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Latest Videos

More Videos

Are you sure they wont start a platform that the cheese is white, pretty sure that is racist

Hite

New brand name for Coon Cheese revealed

Read more

Real digital transformation requires reshaping the way the business create value for customers. Achieving this requires that organization...

ravi H

10 lessons Telstra has learnt through its T22 transformation

Read more

thanks

Lillian Juliet

How Winedirect has lifted customer recency, frequency and value with a digital overhaul

Read more

Having an effective Point of Sale system implemented in your retail store can streamline the transactions and data management activities....

Sheetal Kamble

​Jurlique’s move to mobile POS set to enhance customer experience

Read more

I too am regularly surprised at how little care a large swathe of consumers take over the sharing and use of their personal data. As a m...

Catherine Stenson

Have customers really changed? - Marketing edge - CMO Australia

Read more

Blog Posts

Brand storytelling lessons from Singapore’s iconic Fullerton hotel

In early 2020, I had the pleasure of staying at the newly opened Fullerton Hotel in Sydney. It was on this trip I first became aware of the Fullerton’s commitment to brand storytelling.

Gabrielle Dolan

Business storytelling leader

You’re doing it wrong: Emotion doesn’t mean emotional

If you’ve been around advertising long enough, you’ve probably seen (or written) a slide which says: “They won’t remember what you say, they’ll remember how you made them feel.” But it’s wrong. Our understanding of how emotion is used in advertising has been ill informed and poorly applied.

Zac Martin

Senior planner, Ogilvy Melbourne

Why does brand execution often kill creativity?

The launch of a new brand, or indeed a rebrand, is a transformation to be greeted with fanfare. So why is it that once the brand has launched, the brand execution phase can also be the moment at which you kill its creativity?

Rich Curtis

CEO, FutureBrand A/NZ

Sign in