At Facebook’s F8 developer conference, not only did Facebook make announcement for its existing services such as Messenger. The company also introduced their very own 360-degree camera called the Facebook Surround 360. It consists of 17 cameras in total, allowing users to capture videos in 360-degrees.
The Facebook Surround 360 looks like a spinning top. It has 14 cameras around the edge, one fish-eye camera on the top facing upwards, and two cameras pointing down. According to the company, this setup allows the camera to capture a “truly spherical video”. Once captured, a software will be used to stitch all the clips together to form video in 4K, 6K and even 8K for each individual eye for stereoscopic playback.
Again, this is nothing new. About a year ago, GoPro announced a 360-degree camera mount that lets users capture 360-degree videos. However, users will have to stitch the videos together using a separate software. For Facebook, they will not be selling the Surround 360. Instead, they will share the hardware design and video stitching algorithms on Github, so an average user will be able to capture 360-degree videos without having to spend extra on software and hardware. They will of course, still have to purchase their own cameras and tools to build the rig.