Google offers a peek at its upcoming YouTube VR app

youtube vr app
Counting on virtual reality being the next big thing, Google this week unveiled a veritable box of very real delights at its annual I/O developer bash in Silicon Valley.

Besides its new Android-based Daydream VR platform and accompanying hardware, the Mountain View company said it’s also planning to revamp some of its existing apps – Google Play Movies, Street View, and Google Photos among them – to offer better VR experiences for what it hopes will eventually become a huge army of enthusiastic users.

A VR-focused YouTube mobile app is also on the way, sporting the it-does-what-it-says-on-the-tin name of YouTube VR.

In a blog post teasing the app, the web giant said that while it’s already been adding support for new video and audio formats on YouTube such as 360-degree video, VR video, and spatial audio, the time was right to introduce “an easier, more immersive way to find and experience virtual reality content on YouTube.”

The app, expected to arrive in the fall alongside Daydream, will incorporate features such as voice search, discovery, and playlists, with users also able to watch all of the video site’s content, “from classic 16×9 videos to 360-degree footage to cutting-edge VR experiences in full 3-D,” YouTube VR’s Kurt Wilms wrote in the post, adding, “Whether you want a front row seat to your favorite concert, access to the best museums in the world, or a midday break from work watching your favorite YouTube creator, YouTube VR will have it all.”

Notably, Wilms said Google-owned YouTube is already working with the likes of the NBA, BuzzFeed, and Tastemade to learn more about how best to tell stories in virtual environments, with discoveries set to be shared with other content creators.

Exciting things are happening in VR, but many consumers are yet to be convinced. However, with millions of users around the world hardly ever off YouTube, the company’s decision to go all-in with VR could certainly help persuade more people to try out the immersive platform, which in turn should motivate more content creators to get involved, thus helping to ensure the platform’s long-term success.


The Teslasuit could turn Black Mirror’s terrifying ‘Playtest’ into a reality

We spoke with Teslasuit co-founder Dimitri Mikhalchuk about VR gaming at CES 2019. With all its features, the future of the Teslasuit and virtual reality look bright. And it also sounds a bit like a Black Mirror episode.
Virtual Reality

Think virtual reality is just for games? These awesome apps will change your mind

Virtual reality isn't all about gaming. Swim with turtles, paint in 3D, and immerse yourself in some unique experiences the platform has to offer with our curated list of the best VR apps.
Social Media

A quick swipe will soon let you keep bingeing YouTube on mobile devices

The YouTube mobile app has a new, faster way to browse: Swiping. Once the update rolls out, users can swipe to go to the next (or previous) video in the recommended list, even while viewing in full screen.

These are the coolest virtual and augmented reality gadgets from CES 2019

CES 2019 had plenty of VR and AR gadgets on display, including headsets that completely change how you experience virtual reality, and some that don't even require a PC or a phone to run.

Forget 8K, the Insta360 Titan records 11K that can still play back on smartphones

The Insta360 Titan is an 11K 360 camera -- and a 10K VR camera -- yet software allows the footage to be played back at full resolution, even on smartphones. The camera also uses the largest sensors in a standalone 360 camera yet.
Virtual Reality

With 4K resolution, Pico’s latest stand-alone VR headset takes care of business

Pico Interactive, a popular VR headset manufacturer in China, is adding to its G2 line of business-focused VR headsets with the G2 4K, which is capable of rendering visuals in higher resolutions.
Product Review

HTC puts eye-tracking tech in Vive Pro Eye to make next-gen VR hands-free

With the announcement of integrated eye tracking for the Vive Pro Eye, hands-free VR, less demanding high-quality experiences, and intuitive software, are all on the table.

HTC brings two new headsets, a VR browser, and ‘Netflix for VR’ to CES 2019

HTC Vive made several new announcements to CES 2019, including two new headsets, a new subscription service, and a new user interface that completely transforms how applications are launched.

Camera records real-life scenes to design virtual worlds using a single device

Creating virtual reality worlds may get a bit easier in 2019 -- the Axis is a camera module that records a 180-degree depth map, allowing designers to reconstruct the scene for virtual or augmented reality.

The Vive Pro Eye uses Tobii eye-tracking technology to make VR more lifelike

HTC revealed the Vive Pro Eye with eye-tracking support at its CES 2019 press conference on January 7. We now know that Tobii will be the company responsible for integrating the technology.

Oculus’ Quest is the headset that will make me (and you) a VR believer

Without excessive wires or complicated setup, and a price point that makes sense for tech that just isn't there yet, Oculus' upcoming standalone headset, the Quest, could bring VR mainstream.

Dive headfirst into the best experiences available now on the Oculus Rift

The Oculus Rift brought back virtual reality and put a modern twist to it. Grab your Touch Controllers, put on your VR headset, and jump into the fun with some of the best Oculus Rift games available now.

The best VR headsets at CES 2019 could bring the technology to the mainstream

While there weren't a ton of new VR headset on display at CES 2019, the ones we saw led us to believe that VR could have a real moment soon, both from a gaming and business standpoint.

These shoes let me stroll through ‘Skyrim,’ and I desperately want to go back

After being funded in just two hours on Kickstarter back in October 2018, Cybershoes has earned itself a place among the coolest VR walking and running tech. At CES 2019, we got to try them out and they live up to the hype.