SOFTWARE COMPANY Opera is adding support for 360-degree virtual reality in its Developer browser v.49, making it a bit of a trailblazer.
Virtual reality is hot cakes right now, and Opera knows this. It wants its users to start jamming one of those stupid looking headsets on and immerse themselves in a virtual reality world that may or may not be better than the real thing.
Opera is going to make it really easy for people to embrace this as well, and has removed the faff involved in pairing a system up with a headset.
"The rapid growth of the 360 videos and soon WebVR bring an exciting revolution for VR content on the web. However, with limited software support, it has been difficult for VR headset owners to easily enjoy the fast growing library of 360-degree content on Youtube, Facebook and other video portals," said the firm.
"So far they had to use inconvenient workarounds: download the video first, including spending time on finding a "download" button and waiting for the download, then quit the browser and launch a separate player app. It wastes time and bandwidth on blindly downloading a video. Sounds ancient."
Opera, though usually a nice-guy company, is a bit sniffy about the competition, explaining that it demands more for its users than those rivals.
"We want to bring the best web experience to our users. That's why Opera has begun to focus on creating and embedding direct VR playback into the browser. This functionality enables users to watch virtual reality videos, and standard 2D videos, instantly through their VR headsets," it added.
"The newest Opera developer version comes with VR 360 player feature enabled and will automatically detect an installed VR headset. When a user browses to a video, a button above the video (next to Opera's video pop out button) labeled ‘Watch in VR' will appear. One simple click will engulf the viewer into the 360-degree world offered by the video".
The firm added that you can also sit in your headset and watch 2D videos, for some reason. Perhaps knowing that this is unlikely it has partnered with an American football team to produce some 3D footage of them training. µ
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