360-degree videos are wonderful – they give you a full panoramic experience, despite not even having to be there. Though, it’s not always that easy to figure out where to look. Should be watch a band perform on stage, or should you look at that one guy just behind the camera who keeps looking at it. Well, YouTube are providing new insights to their creators, who will now be able to see where people are looking while watching their 360-degree videos.
Creators will be able to view a heat-map of where people are looking for all 360-degree videos over 1,000 views. Using this information, content creators should be able to figure out what people are attracted to looking at in 360 videos, and even curate the experience to ensure their focus gaze is set in the right area.
Currently YouTube’s 360-degree videos can be watched with a virtual reality (VR) head-mounted display (HMD), by using YouTube’s Google Play or App Store app, or even using your mouse in your browser.
YouTube aren’t just giving creators indirect information – they’re also giving advice directly. A few helpful tips on optimising 360-degree videos for their platform, with advice such as viewers spend 75% of the time facing in the “front 90-degrees of a video,” so they advise to focus on the front view. Also, YouTube suggests creators use markers of indicators so users will know where to look to see the most interesting imagery.
This can only be a good thing for 360-degree video content. The extra insight should help creators customise their editing for the medium, hopefully bringing up the overall quality of videos for VR fans to watch. For more on 360-degree video and all the latest VR news, make sure to stay on VRFocus.