YouTube 360 video coming to TV screens soon – CNET

Do you like big-screen TVs? Do you like YouTube 360 video? Well, has Google got a feature upgrade for you.

The company says its big-screen YouTube app will soon receive an upgrade to enable you to pan around the many 360-degree videos available on YouTube, all from the comfort of your couch.

The upgrade will arrive first on Android TV devices like Sony TVs and Nvidia Shield, then move to other big-screen YouTube apps.

I got the chance to check out an early version of the feature at CES in January using the Shield, a $200 streaming/gaming box. The game controller’s joystick provided a simple, natural way to control the panning, and playback was smooth and lifelike. This particular video was taken from a jet cockpit, and the effect was really cool.

For TVs and other devices that don’t have game controllers, you can use keys on the remote to pan around.

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An Nvidia Shield Android TV game controller panning around a YouTube 360 video.

Sarah Tew/CNET

360 videos are filmed with special cameras that shoot in all directions simultaneously, often allowing users to control the camera to “look” in any direction. YouTube has offered 360 videos on its web site and mobile apps since 2015.

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