Facebook Launches 360-Degree Video on News Feed

September 23, 2015

5:00 pm

Facebook announced today that, in collaboration with Oculus, it has launched 360-degree videos in News Feed. Various publishers including Star Wars, Discovery, GoPro, LeBron James & Uninterrupted, NBC’s Saturday Night Live, and VICE are among the first taking advantage of these new capabilities – with VICE debuting a 360-degree video of its reporting in Afgahnistan.

Front Line Diaries: Afghanistan, 2015“Over 18 months after our withdrawal, there is almost no evidence that we were ever in Afghanistan, let alone that we spent billions of dollars on reconstruction, development and security. Many Afghans look to the future with fear. We didn’t leave because we achieved our goals, we left because we gave up on them.”

Posted by VICE on Wednesday, September 23, 2015

According to the launch announcement released by Facebook earlier today:

“Our goal at Facebook is to connect you with the people and things that matter, every single day. Over time, we’ve seen that people enjoy more immersive content in their News Feeds…In the future, imagine watching 360 videos of a friend’s vacation to a small village in France or a festival in Brazil — you’ll be able to look around and experience it as if you were there. Along with updates from your friends and family, you will also be able to discover amazing new content on Facebook from media companies, organizations, and individual creators.”

The novelty is surely alluring, and the real-life benefits of it – the ability to experience what you’re seeing in ways more accurate to those doing the filming at the time – the practicality of it stands still. The costs associated with filming these experiences – let alone actually owning a device that plays them (currently, my iPhone 6 Plus can’t play any of the available 36-degree videos on Facebook) – are expensive.

If you’re on your computer or on an Android device, however, feel free to visit any of the publishers above and take a look at some of their 360-degree videos. Definitely something worth it.

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Ronald Barba was the previous managing editor of Tech.Co. His primary story interests include industry trends, consumer-facing apps/products, the startup lifestyle, business ethics, diversity in tech, and what-is-this-bullsh*t things.

Aside from writing about startups and entrepreneurship, Ronald is interested in ‘Doctor Who’, Murakami, ‘The Mindy Project’, and fried chicken. He is currently based in New York because he mistakenly studied philosophy in college and is now a “writer”. Tweet @RonaldPBarba.

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