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YouTube debuts VR

YouTube unveiled a 360-degree live-streamed video and spatial audio in the immersive video experience at the NAB. YouTube partnered with tech site The Verge to air the first live-streamed 360-degree content this week, with YouTube chief product officer Neal Mohan reporting an explosion of interest in virtual reality (VR) and 360-degree video.

Mohan said YouTube wanted to launch spatial audio, which allows users to set the distance and direction of audio. Viewers can plug in headphones, watch a 360-degree video and determine the direction and volume of sound associated with different parts of the screen.

YouTube partnered The Verge to launch its first 360-degree concert coverage. Mohan said that live streaming provided access to content in real time and enabled people to feel they are “right there at that concert as it’s really happening”.

YouTube aims to make its technology scalable and accessible. From a user standpoint “everyone should be able to access live 360- content from any device” through the core YouTube app, said Mohan.

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