VLC, the app that lets you play basically any video format on practically any platform, is about to add support for a whole new medium. The company just unveiled a technical preview that enables its desktop app to play 360-degree videos, so folks can watch their dizzying footage on their computers. The preview is now available for Windows and Mac machines, and the full version will arrive with VLC 3.0 , which is expected at the end of the month.
VLC's creators VideoLan teamed up with 360-degree camera maker Giroptic to develop its system, which can display photos, panoramas and videos. You can use your mouse and keyboard to control your point of view in the footage. VideoLan says it will make these features available on its mobile apps as well, and let users navigate the clips by moving their accelerometer-carrying devices around. It also said it will support VR headsets such as the Oculus Rift, Google's Daydream and the HTC Vive in 2017. The app is also getting 360-degree audio support "including head tracking headphones," says the company, although it's not clear when that will happen.
Since it's still just a technical preview, those who are itching to try VLC 360 out should temper their expectations as it might be buggy. Even so, it's clear that VLC is making a big push into enabling VR experiences across all its supported platforms, which should be good news for its large base of tech-savvy fans.