Social media users can expect to add more dimension to their vacation photos by simply taking panoramic shots using their smartphones. Facebook has announced that it will soon introduce a “360 Photos” feature to its News Feed, which will use images created from panoramas taken from mobile devices and 360-degree enabled cameras, and are best appreciated using the Samsung Gear VR. Although any device will allow viewers to pan around a photo by tilting a device or dragging the image, Samsung smartphone users will have a “View in VR button,” which lets them see the photo in virtual reality using a Gear VR.
This opens a whole new creation angle for Facebook, as users can capture these photos without necessarily needing special equipment or applications to bring them to life. The feature follows the company’s announced 360-video support for its News Feed last September, but this expansion may be more accessible to users.
This feature was announced today on Oculus’ blog page, as part of the news that the Gear VR has expanded to a much bigger audience. The blog notes that the device has managed to reach over one million people in the past month alone, an impressive feat for a device that’s only been on the market for about six months. The company also touted its diverse line-up of over 250 apps, including popular games like Minecraft and Bait!, as well as special events like the Kentucky Derby and March Madness.
For the Facebook, Oculus is setting up a specific app, titled Oculus 360 Photos, where users can upload their photos and then see them using the device. It’ll definitely recreate that feel of being at a popular vacation event like the Rio Carnival.
Don’t be surprised if this starts a boom in panoramic photos. Having a full 360-degree view of a tropical resort or lavish vacation site is always welcome.