Much like 360-degree videos on YouTube, the videos give the user a virtual reality-like experience letting them view anything in the camera's field of vision within the video from any angle.
At launch, the feature was available for viewing on Android and the web, but Facebook just announced some updates including iOS support. Samsung Gear VR and supported Samsung smartphones can also play the videos from the News Feed.
Facebook also announced the launch of a site for resources for creators of the videos. It includes guidelines, common questions, best practices, etc. You can find this at 360video.fb.com.
"We’re also introducing an optional video control setting for Pages uploading 360 video on Facebook," says Facebook in a blog post. "Page owners will now have the ability to edit the initial camera position and vertical field of view before uploading their 360 videos, allowing for greater control in post-production."
"We also want to make it easier to upload 360 videos taken from consumer cameras," it says. "We’re working with several camera makers, like Theta, Giroptic, IC Real Tech, and 360 Fly which are providing in-app “publish to Facebook” options. Videos taken with these cameras will be shareable directly from the native mobile apps, making it easier to share your 360 moments with friends and family."
The videos are being made available as an ad format, but only to select advertisers right now, as the company commences with testing. Brands on board include AT&T, Corona, Nescafe, Ritz, Samsung, and Walt Disney World.
Images via Facebook