You can now play 360° videos and images on the latest VLC player update
VideoLAN developers will integrate 360° viewing technology into the latest update of the VLC player, according to some reports, adding yet another option for video playback to the almost omnipotent media software.
The VLC media player is one of the most downloaded pieces of software in the world, and it allows users to play almost (if not all) known video formats created so far.
A technical preview of the latest version is now available for Windows and Mac, offering playback for 360° videos, photos, and panoramic shots. It features impressive display modes and the 360° motion quickly works with the mouse and keyboard.
VLC teamed up with San Francisco-based Giroptic to integrate 360° into the media player
Giroptic is a French-American joint effort to develop effective 360° and VR imaging technologies for immersive experiences. They are currently selling the latest prototype of their 360° HD camera on their official website for $499.
The new VLC version will feature two specs called ‘Spatial Video’ and ‘Spherical’ to perform its 360° functions, and three display modes called ‘Zoom,’ ‘Little Planet,’ and ‘Reverse Little Planet.’
It will also be Open Source and Cross Platform, to ensure faster development, and will feature acceleration provided by OpenGL and Direct3D11. Giroptic helped by providing hardware, coding, and both technical and theoretical support to VideoLAN’s project.
“VLC is one of the video players most widely used in the world. We are very proud to contribute our expertise in 360° to this open source player,” wrote Richard Ollier, Giroptic’s co-founder, and CEO. “This will allow the million of VLC users to take full advantage of a promising new technology and be widely involved in its democratization.”
Watch 360° VLC demo videos on your smartphone
VLC is expanding its reaches to keep up with the new trends in video playback, now ever-updating since the dawn of VR headsets, which occurred at a very fast rate.
The technical preview is a beta version of what’s to come in VLC’s future 3.0 update, which will ultimately replace its latest patch, 2.2.4. This download might contain some bugs, as it represents only the first phase of the project.
— Engadget (@engadget) November 26, 2016
However, the technical improvements attempted by VLC put it way ahead of its competitors. The company has promised the availability of this update for platforms, including Android and iOS, and later integration with VR systems such as Vive, Daydream, and Oculus.
3D audio playback is also in the works, they note. VLC 360 3.0 will come most likely at the end of the month.