Google has brought two new features to YouTube that’s going to dramatically improve the virtual reality experience for anyone using the app. These features expound upon the 360-degree video support that was added last year, which allowed creators to upload immersive videos and experiences to YouTube for fans to enjoy.
Now you’ll be able to not only watch 360-degree video to YouTube, but we’re going to start to see live streams of 360-degree video starting with select performances at Coachella this weekend. YouTube is partnering with other content creators to begin setting these live streams, too, so hopefully it’s a little more commonplace going forward.
In addition to the video streams, YouTube is also going to support spatial audio for 360-degree video. This will make things like concerts and performances sound a little more realistic, where depth and intensity of audio changes depending on where you are or where you’re looking in the video. You can test this out on an Android device right now, but I’d imagine you’d really get the full effect by using a VR headset with some nice headphones.
Off the bat, these new features are definitely going to appeal mostly to things like musical performances, but Google sees it expanding to classrooms, sporting events, and tons of other experiences. These experiences will be open to exponentially more people, which is great for viewers and the performers alike.