Latest in Internet

Image credit:

YouTube’s heatmaps show where eyes linger in VR videos

Shocking nobody, 75 percent of viewers just stare straight ahead.
David Lumb, @OutOnALumb
June 16, 2017
Share
Tweet
Share

Sponsored Links

YouTube

YouTube's growing library of VR content is a definite asset in Google's struggle to dominate the virtual reality sphere. The video platform isn't just improving the consumer experience either, as it did when it added shared virtual viewing rooms and live voice chat back in May. To help content creators figure out which parts of their 360-degree videos are working, YouTube has introduced heatmaps to show where -- and when -- people are looking in the freeform movie format.

YouTube will dole out a heatmap for any 360-degree video with over 1,000 views. The platform has a few early observations from its nascent catalogue of VR movies. For one, despite the freedom to look anywhere, viewers spend 75 percent of their time watching the front 90 degrees, so keep the action straight ahead. But 20 percent of views focus directly behind, so don't abandon the format's freeform possibilities. Lastly, VR platforms are not made equal: Mobile headset users, like those donning Google's own Cardboard, take a few seconds to get situated in a vehicle (whereas viewers with desktop systems do not).

Knowing where folks choose to look isn't just useful for content creators. Facebook has developed a few strategies to keep streaming video bitrates low and quality high, one of which includes using AI predictive modeling to intuit the most interesting parts of a video (where viewers will focus their attention) and render that in higher resolution than other parts.

On top of the heatmap announcement, Google is also announcing an upcoming training course for virtual reality content creators called the VR Creator Lab. Applicants chosen will start a three-month intensive course this August and get $30,000 to $40,000 to fund their dream project.

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Comment
Comments
Share
Tweet
Share

Popular on Engadget

TCL rolls out new Roku Ready Alto sound bars with Dolby Atmos

TCL rolls out new Roku Ready Alto sound bars with Dolby Atmos

View
Xbox Series X first look: Fast, powerful and quiet

Xbox Series X first look: Fast, powerful and quiet

View
NASA delays James Webb Space Telescope launch until October 2021

NASA delays James Webb Space Telescope launch until October 2021

View
Dell updated its 13-inch XPS laptops with 11th-gen Intel CPUs

Dell updated its 13-inch XPS laptops with 11th-gen Intel CPUs

View
Suspected ransomware attack hits one of the largest hospital networks in the US

Suspected ransomware attack hits one of the largest hospital networks in the US

View

From around the web

Page 1Page 1ear iconeye iconFill 23text filevr