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Virtual Reality versus 360 Video

What a time to be alive…

This blog post isn’t a plug for Drake and Future’s new mixtape, nor is it an easter egg for those of you who watched the Simpsons religiously. (Although both would undoubtedly guarantee that we’d be good friends.)

This blog is about the future… And the future is now!

It’s an observation that I’m making more and more this year. Just the other day, SpaceX successfully landed first stage on a drone ship in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean after launching a satellite into orbit.

The “first stage” refers to a part of the rocket that carries fuel. In the past, this piece had to be discarded after launching the rocket into orbit. So why is that such a big deal? Well, just imagine how expensive it would be to fly if 80% of an airplane had to be thrown away after each flight.

Besides the fact that successfully landing first stage back on earth has the possibility to cut the cost of space exploration by 10x, it reminded me that in the distant future, I may be able to look down on earth from space. Pretty incredible.

For now though, I’ll have to settle for virtual reality and 360 video, which is pretty amazing in its own right.

You can go skydiving, be inside a music video, or float down the colorado river inside the Grand Canyon in these virtual adventures.

While virtual reality and 360 video seem pretty similar, there are some important distinctions between the two.

Setting
As the name would indicate, virtual reality takes place in a digital environment, while 360 video is generated based off the recording of live action video.

Mobility
360 video limits mobility to only the filmmaker’s camera movements, while VR offers an unconstrained and immersive world that you can walk around in and explore, creating your own storyline.

Platform
To experience the full virtual reality experience, you’ll need a VR headset like the popular Oculus Rift. 360 video however, is available to you right now on your phone or desktop computer through 360 compatible players like Youtube.

Application
360 videos are now relatively easy to create with the right equipment. Like I said earlier, the future is now.

In my opinion, it won’t be long before 360 video becomes more common in video marketing campaigns. At One Floor Up, we love finding new ways to tell stories and would jump at the chance to give 360 video a try before the novelty wears off. Hopefully you’re as excited for the future as I am.

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