Facebook’s interest in virtual reality is not a secret. The company did pay a whopping $2 billion for Oculus VR last year, which is why it does not come as a complete surprise to learn that Facebook has recently announced the support of 360-degree videos. According to the company, they will be rolling out 360-degree videos in your News Feed.
Facebook had already announced the feature earlier this year so we guess it is now ready for primetime. How it works is simple: users watch the video can drag it to the left or right, up or down in order to “see” the content and its varying angles. It pretty much works similar to how YouTube’s own 360-degree videos work as well.
Users on smartphones can experience it even better by tilting their devices around to explore the various angles, although Facebook notes that this is only for Android at the moment, with iOS support coming in the next few months. If anything this move from Facebook seems to be a precursor to their future plans for virtual reality where more 360-degree video and content will be created for the platform.
Of course one will need a special camera to capture such video, so don’t expect to see too much right off the bat. However according to the social networking company, there are several publishers who have content ready. This includes Star Wars, Discovery, GoPro, LeBron James & Uninterrupted, NBC’s Saturday Night Live, and VICE, along with a special debut by Disney and LucasFilm who will showcase an exclusive 360-degree video based on the upcoming Star Wars: The Force Awakens movie.