360 degree video tests

Some experiments with motion graphics and animation in 360 degree video, kind of like VR/Google Cardboard, but without having to strap something to the viewers face (at a cost of not having stereoscopic video with depth).

This sort of 360 video can be uploaded to Youtube and Facebook, and a bunch of other sites.

There are some compatibility issues and workarounds with Safari on both desktop and iPhones:

On  iOS, the videos will play fine in the Youtube App, but not when embedded in a page, and opened in mobile Safari.
A standard link (or a link on an image), to the Youtube page will make the Safari iOS browser open the Youtube app (and will playback fine, and allow the user to look around).

Safari on desktop Macs (OSX/MacOs) currently doesn’t support 360 degree video, and the Youtube page has a warning below the page saying it isn’t supported.

I think it’s coolest on the Facebook Mobile app, where you upload a video directly to Facebook. Since auto-playing video (silenced) and using the phone’s gyroscope means that you are automatically interacting with it as soon as you scroll past it in your news feed.

Because these are video files, it doesn’t support head tracking, so you can’t move your head side to side/back and forth, but it does support rotation.
Though if the videos have a lot of movement, paralax and depth (and give the viewer something they can follow around), you can hide the users limited movement, so it doesn’t just look like a photo wrapped around a sphere. Particles, smoke and dust gives them something little to follow around and explore.

On mobile, the user will be facing forwards – but not level or straight onto the horizon, since it will be using the phones gyroscope, so they may be looking slightly below the horizon line.

If you want the viewer to look towards a focal point, it might need some movement towards the point to direct them.