Explore 360° Video
As you start out, spend some time getting familiar with various types of 360° content.
How to view 360° media
There are a few ways to watch 360° video:
- An immersive VR headset
- A VR headset that uses a mobile phone
- A mobile phone on its own
- A web-based media player
While viewing 360° media using a headset provides the fullest immersion experience, it is also possible to view content using web-based media players, which provide more participants with access to view content for ideas and inspiration.
Exploring different genres
There is a wealth of 360° content out there that explores the possibilities with this medium. We can’t possibly list them all here! As a starting point, think about all the different genres that could leverage the 360° format. Here are some ideas and examples:
- Clouds Over Sidra – Follow Sidra, a 12-year-old girl, as she guides you through her temporary home: The Zaatari Refugee Camp in Jordan. Zaatari is home to 130,000 Syrians fleeing violence and war, and children make up half the camp’s population. In this lyrical VR film, Sidra leads you through her daily life: Eating, sleeping, learning and playing in the vast desert city of tents.
- One World, Many Stories– An episodic VR series that follows young people from around the globe to discover how we may not be so different after all.
- Through the Ages: President Obama Celebrates America’s National Parks – Through the Ages: President Obama Celebrates America’s National Parks transports you on a journey to Yosemite with President Obama as he honors the legacy of our country’s national parks in the context of the National Parks Service Centennial.
- Related resource: Learn about advances in documentary filmmaking, including virtual reality and immersive media, with the MIT Open Documentary Lab playlists on YouTube
- The Asahi Shinbum VR – NewsVR developed by the Asahi Shimbun Company
- The GuardianVR – The Guardian’s VR Studio
- The Daily 360 on the New York Times: Times journalists around the world bring you a new 360° video every day.
- Reuters Focus 360: A combination of 360° video and 360° photo slideshows.
- Contrast VR – Al Jazeera’s Immersive Media Studio.
- Peninsula Press Immersive Storytelling – A project of the Stanford Journalism Program that covers local news in Silicon Valley.
- Cirque du Soleil’s Zarkana – Experience a 360° performance from Cirque du Soleil’s Zarkana.
- The Nutcracker | The Royal Ballet – Immerse yourself in the extraordinary world of The Royal Ballet with a 360-degree experience following young dancer Julia Roscoe as she prepares for her debut as a snowflake in The Nutcracker.
- Your First Day – Experience your future workplace in a unique 360° world.
- Breaking Boundaries in Science – An interactive virtual reality celebration of influential women scientists, including famous figures like Jane Goodall, Marie Curie, and Grace Hopper.
- Dreaming in Za’atari: Stories After Syria – In Jordan’s Za’atari refugee camp, explore three Syrian teenagers’ hopes and dreams for the future through VR animations that transform the spaces around them.
What other genres could leverage 360° media? Are there things you could do with 360° media that are outside of existing genres and media experiences?
You can find lots of other 360° media by browsing the web, including on Facebook and YouTube, and using VR apps optimized for your headset.
Exploring Youth-Produced 360° Videos
Through the 360 Filmmakers Challenge, many young people have used 360° videos to share their communities, inspire action, and spur learning. Check out these and other finalists on the 360 Filmmakers Challenge Facebook page:
- Raised by Charlottesville, Charlottesville High School in Charlottesville, Virginia
- From the filmmakers: “Our video was created to show that even if you have grown and changed, your home will always be there. No matter if you see your home as gloomier than you did when you were a child, there is still beauty to be found. It may be a different kind of beauty, but it is there, you just have to look for it.”
- Breaking Barriers, Parkville High School in Baltimore, Maryland
- From the filmmakers: “The overall theme of the project was reaching out to those around you because you don’t know what someone could be going through, and you may be able to make a difference.”
- Borderline: Crossing the Border, Reaching the Dream, Sequoia High School in Redwood City, California
- From the filmmakers: “We hope that people see that this is one story out of many. We want people to really listen and feel the pain these families go through. We want to make a difference on how people view our race and any race. We want equality for everyone. We want people to stop treating illegal immigrants and their families like they are not human. Because all of us are human, we all have a purpose in this world. We can make this world a better place.”
- The Fakes, Monticello High School in Charlottesville, Virginia
- From the filmmakers: “This film is about teens in and out of school. We will be following four teenage girls and tracking their emotions throughout the film in numerous ways. We will be focusing on bullying, verbal comments, fake friends, and sports. We are focusing on this issue because people kill themselves and we want to let them to know that they are not alone.”