Introduction To 360 Degree Video For Gear VR

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Posted By Naveed


Video recordings, also known as 360-degree video, immersive video, or spherical video, are recorded simultaneously from each viewing direction. Unlike regular video that captures the camera’s field of view, this video captures the full 360 degrees. One common way to capture 360-degree video in VR is for the video to wrap around the inside of the ball and place you in the center of the ball. Viewers can look around from all directions.

This blog introduces tips and tricks for developing 360 videos, especially Gear VR videos.

basic tips

Before diving into the nitty gritty of 360 video, here’s a list of basic tips for developers working with 360 video for the Gear VR. This is not a recommendation or requirement, it is a suggested option and is only a starting point. The “best” composition is highly dependent on the video content.

Recommended cinema8 configuration: 4096 x 2048 video at 30 fps encoded in H.264 .

Recommended stereo configuration: 3840 × 2160 video at 30 fps, H.265/VP9 encoded at 10-20 Mbps bit rate.

A comprehensive alternative to experimenting with bitrates and encodings is ffm peg.

Streaming is preferred, but if possible, users can upload a video for later playback.

You must use at least HLS/Dash for streaming.

While streaming, you can try a large buffer to turn off the radio for a while while playing.

Exo Player generally works well with Android’s advanced video playback options.

Cinema8 360 vs Stereo 360

Most online 360 ​​video content is cinema8. This means that there is no deeper information between the background and the foreground, and the same image is displayed in both eyes. Our brains can still compensate for the lack of in-depth information by comparing objects to each other and predicting their size from a distance, but 360-degree video in this genre is virtually flat.

Stereoscopic 360 video, also known as “3D 360 video,” provides two different images separately for each eye, allowing the brain to perceive depth the same way it does in real life. Adding in-depth knowledge will greatly enhance your 360-degree video experience. However, creating high-quality 360-degree videos is difficult. As camera technology advances, creating stereoscopic 360-degree videos has become easier, but now creating 3D 360 videos requires serious consideration at every step of the process. This process includes everything from design to actual reproduction, including platform, equipment selection, capture, and especially post-production.

Perceived resolution compared to video resolution

One of the issues with 360 video is resolution and playback. Even when video content is encoded in 4K or higher, it is not uncommon for first-time video developers to be frustrated by the significantly lower resolution of video content. The problem is the difference between a video file (usually a polygonal panoramic image) and a small portion of the video file that the user sees.

The video file itself can be high-resolution, but the viewer can only see a small portion of the file at a time, so the video file needs to expand significantly around the field of view. A 4K video file viewed from a 90 degree field of view produces a perceived resolution of approximately 1K. In practice, the actual resolution of the video should be around 16K, so the observed definition at 90 degrees FOV is 4k.


A video codec provides a format for compressing and decompressing video. It can be software or hardware based on the target platform. As these are the most commonly supported video codecs, the most commonly defined options are H.264, H.265 and VP8, VP9.

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