Facebook’s Here and Now VR film puts you in New York’s Grand Central Station

facebook here and now grand central station
Remember Facebook’s 360-degree camera rig that was showed off at its F8 conference and costs $30,000? Turns out it’s actually being used! The company has debuted its first 360-degree film, called Here and Now.

The film is shot as a single take in New York’s Grand Central Station, and you, the viewer, “stand” in a single spot as strangers pass by. You’ll also hear small soundbites of audio, as a family says goodbye to their daughter, two friends take photos of each other in the station, a couple argues, and so on.

“Explore Grand Central Terminal and the stories that unfold there in the first film shot with the new Facebook Surround 360 camera. Watch the film in standard monoscopic 360 here, or find it in the Oculus Video app to watch in full 3D-360 with Gear VR,” Facebook says in a statement.


The video itself was created by Facebook’s The Factory creative studio, and according to a report from CNET, Grand Central Station was chosen because it “fit their goals to tell many stories of humanity in one take.” The studio also “loved that the station could be a character in and of itself since its so iconic.”

Perhaps even more interesting is the fact that the video was shot using Facebook’s Surround 360 camera rig. Thirteen complete shots of the film were recorded over three nights at Grand Central Station, because of the fact that it’s impossible to edit shots in post production.

The film can be viewed on a computer screen, or you can view it on the Samsung Gear VR headset, built with Oculus, which is owned by Facebook.

If you’re interested in making your own films like this, you can also do that, but you may have to shell out a cool $30,000 to do so — Facebook is planning on posting the designs and the software code for the rig to GitHub later this summer.

Photography

With flip-out lenses, the Vuze XR transforms from 360- to 180-degree VR camera

The Vuze XR is a compact, dual-lens camera with an integrated handle and a neat party trick: The back-to-back lenses can flip forward to transition from 360-degree two-dimensional video, to 180-degree three-dimensional video.
Photography

What does this button do? A quick guide to understanding your camera’s controls

Most DSLR cameras are user-friendly, but that doesn't mean you can make sense of every button on your own. Thankfully, our quick-hit guide will help you better acquaint yourself with your camera's operation.
Photography

Here's a few tips to getting the best camera gear on Prime Day

Amazon Prime Day will have plenty of deals, and that may include cameras and photo accessories. Before you drop cash on that camera, here are some things to consider that could save you time and money.
Emerging Tech

AirSelfie’s second-gen selfie drone with better flight time is now available

The second-generation AirSelfie drone more than doubles the original's camera resolution from 5 to 12 megapixels, quadruples its internal memory to 16GB, and adds 50 percent more flight time.
Movies & TV

A horse, a sword, and hair clips highlight latest 'John Wick 3' set videos

The third installment of the wildly successful action series that stars Keanu Reeves as a deadly assassin forced out of retirement, John Wick 3: Parabellum, hits theaters in May 2019. Here's everything we know about the movie so far.
Mobile

Apple's third iOS 12 beta may help you save a lot of data

At this year's Worldwide Developer Conference, Apple unveiled its latest operating system, iOS 12. From app updates to group FaceTime, ARKit 2.0, and more, here are all the new features in iOS 12.
Mobile

Samsung’s moon-hopping VR experience in NYC is like space camp for adults

For the next year, Samsung will let you simulate walking on the moon, thanks to the Gear VR, Galaxy S9 Plus, and a complicated harness system that was developed in partnership with NASA.
Movies & TV

M. Night Shyamalan debuts the first 'Glass' trailer at Comic-Con

M. Night Shyamalan is getting back behind the camera for Glass, his crossover film that connects the stories and characters from his 2000 superhero film Unbreakable with his 2016 thriller Split. Here's what we know about the movie.
Movies & TV

First footage from 'It: Chapter Two' says to bring your 'adult diapers'

A second film based on Stephen King's novel It hits theaters in September 2019. Here's everything we know about It: Chapter 2, which is set 27 years after the events of 2017's box-office blockbuster, It.
Mobile

Fuchsia could eventually replace Android, but it's years away from doing so

Details have emerged about a new operating system Google's developers are working on dubbed Fuchsia OS. Here's everything we know about Google's mysterious new operating system so far.
Outdoors

Tread lightly: Here’s the best ultralight backpacking gear in existence

The very best ultralight hiking and backpacking gear for the outdoor enthusiast who wants to go light and fast on the trail using packs, tents, sleeping bags sleeping pads, and stoves that weigh next to nothing.
Mobile

Samsung reportedly planning to retire Plus series after Galaxy S10 Plus

It may be no more than a sparkle in Samsung's eye, but the Samsung Galaxy S10 is definitely coming. Here's everything we know about what's sure to be Samsung's most amazing creation so far.
Emerging Tech

World’s first VR-augmented waterslide is totally unnecessary, but also amazing

An amusement park in Germany unveiled the world's first waterslide that requires riders to wear a virtual reality headset. Here's what went into making this waterlogged VR dream a reality.
Gaming

Everything you need to know about ‘Assassin’s Creed Odyssey’

Ubisoft will release Assassin's Creed Odyssey in October for consoles and PC. Here is everything you need to know about the next chapter of Assassin's Creed, including the story and setting.
Home Theater

PlayStation Vue: The master guide to Sony’s internet TV service

PlayStation Vue is Sony's answer to live TV without the need for a cable or satellite TV subscription. To help you understand the service, its plans, and numerous features, we've created this handy guide.
Mobile

Here’s how to turn off camera shutter sound on your Android phone

That clicking shutter sound on your Android phone can get annoying if you like to take lots of pictures. Fortunately, you can disable it. We will walk you through how to turn off the camera shutter sound on your Android phone.
Virtual Reality

Got a Gear VR headset? These are the apps and games you've got to try

Before you put on your new Gear VR headset, you should know which apps and games are worth downloading. Whether you're a fan of documentaries or arcade games, here's a list of the best Gear VR apps and games to be had.
Computing

Your next virtual reality headset will require just one USB-C cable to connect

Microsoft, Oculus, AMD, Nvidia, and Valve are joining forces to create a new VirtualLink specification. The new tech is designed to replace the HDMI, USB, and power cables needed to connect a VR headset to a PC with a single USB-C cable.
Emerging Tech

New VR horror game gets scarier if your heart rate isn’t fast enough

In new VR game Bring to Light, players can strap on a heart rate monitor to personalize the fear factor. Get too comfortable, and the game’s A.I. will know to ramp up the terror.
Emerging Tech

Nintendo Virtual Boy emulator lets you enjoy VR like it’s 1995 again

Compared with today's VR headsets, Nintendo’s ill-fated, head-mounted Virtual Boy display now looks massively dated. However, thanks to modern Oculus Rift headsets, you can now relive it.
Emerging Tech

Here’s all the best gear and gadgetry you can snag for $100 or less

A $100 bill can get you further than you might think -- so long as you know where to look. Check out our picks for the best tech under $100, whether you're in the market for headphones or a virtual-reality headset.