Not one to shy away from improving the world inside our VR headsets, Google has announced that YouTube is working with Daydream in order to improve 360-degree and virtual reality videos.

The search engine giant began supporting VR video through YouTube around two years ago, with a dedicated app dropping in 2016.

Now, it appears as though two of its teams will collaborate to close the gap between what our eyes can perceive and what our internet is capable of providing.

As YouTube detailed in a blog post, the collaboration will essentially focus on investigating new ways to translate the spherical, 3D world to a 2D alternative.

By unlocking this cleaner projection, YouTube hopes to create a more uniform resolution across its video content, meaning we can expect to see more efficient and higher quality videos. Previously, it used equirectangular projection (EQ), which can lead to better quality at the top and bottom of a view, instead of the horizon which people generally focus on.

By making equi-angular cubemap projection (EAC) its new standard, improvements like the image below can be expected in VR, which shows the difference between the old and new.

It all gets very technical once you delve any deeper, but the takeaway here is that improved videos are on the way, and that can only be a positive for those who prefer to grab their viral videos in the virtual realm.


YouTube indicated that video playback on Android now benefits from EAC projection streamed using an independent mesh, with those on iOS or desktop receiving the upgrade in the near future.

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