YouTube recently introduced the software capabilities to stream 360 video live from the site.

This has massive implications for the industry: for consumers, producers and in general where the future of video is headed.

For consumers

Currently, users can launch YouTube online or through the app and have immediate access to 360 videos. The update means that users will still have this same access to 360 videos, but importantly this can now be in real time.

In terms of marketing, the update means that consumers will be encouraged to become active and engaged audiences, without the hassle of downloading expensive software or buying a new piece of kit to play the video.

Live 360 consumers

For brands

More importantly for brands, this marks huge progress for the future of 360 video. The format has become cheaper and cheaper to produce, so brands are now not only able to utilise 360 video more easily than before, but can also adopt live 360 into their marketing campaigns.

Releasing live content marks brands as trustworthy, relatable and ultimately more human. The disposable aspect of the content places it alongside consumers’ everyday interaction with video – relatable rather than an alien concept.

Meanwhile, 360 video engages the audience with the company in new and exciting ways, promoting the brand’s image as modern and forward-thinking.

live 360 setup

For the future

Many people in the industry see 360 video as the necessary link between current video consumption and the virtual world of the future. Take Alban Denoyel, co-founder & CEO of the 3D-imaging startup Sketchfab, who said:

“360 video is good to fill the VR content gap…in its essence, 360 video is a format of today (flat video) stretched to fit platforms of tomorrow (VR).”

Others, like Aaron Koblin, CTO of VR startup Vrse, see 360 video as something that itself could morph into virtual reality with certain technologies:

“As you start incorporating features like 3D, stereo 360 and spatialized sound, then you have something you really get lost in and feel like you’re present in that space.

“To me that’s where it gets really exciting, and where it starts to get blurred between whether it’s 360 video still, or whether it’s starting to become a VR experience.”

Live 360 vr

Time will tell, but there’s no denying that live 360 video is a formidable combination, and another step on the ladder towards 360/VR becoming mainstream practise. Will your brand be one of the forerunners?


You can get in touch with us here if you have any questions about 360 video or any general video best practices.