VideoLAN’s widely popular VLC media player app is all geared up to feature 360-degree video support. The company launched a new technical preview that lets users play 360-degree videos on Windows and Macs. The VLC 360-degree will be available in technical preview for few more days as the company plans to release an all-new VLC 3.0 by end of this month with the update features. The makers of VLC worked with a 360-degree camera maker company called Giroptic to help build and test the new 360-degree media feature.
“With the help of Giroptic, VLC becomes the first major video player app to play 360-degree videos out-of-the-box. VLC 3.0 final release will merge those features on all platforms.”
-Notes from the Company Website
The new 360-degree media support also extends to photos, not just videos, so you can view panoramic images as if you were there. VLC 3.0 includes three modes for 360-degree content: zoom, little planet and reverse little planet. The company also mentioned that the 360-degree video feature follows the Spatial Video spec, while photos and panoramas use the Spherical spec. As ever, VLC 3.0 is “open source and cross-platform” and “accelerated with OpenGL and Direct3D11” for 360-degree features.
Similar to how one watches 360-degree content on YouTube or social media platforms, all one needs to do is use the mouse and keyboard to control the point of view in the footage when viewing the content on VLC’s desktop app. The same capabilities will be extended to all platforms including its mobile apps for iOS, Android and Xbox One through which users will be able to experience content by moving their devices equipped with an accelerometer.
“VLC is one of the video players most widely used in the world. We are very proud to contribute our expertise in 360-degree to this open source player. This will allow the millions of VLC users to take full advantage of a promising new technology and be widely involved in its democratisation.”
-Richard Ollier, Co-Founder and CEO of Giroptic.
Other than existing platforms, the new 360-degree feature of the VLC app will also support VR headsets such as the Oculus Rift, Google’s Daydream VR headset, and the HTC Vive in the coming year. The app is further getting 360-degree audio support which is pegged to include tracking headphones.