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Facebook Integration and Dynamic Streaming Now on Gear VR

You can now like and share Facebook 360° videos from within Oculus Video.

Oculus announced last week that they would be adding Facebook integrations to help personalize your Gear VR video experience.

The update has arrived. The Oculus update let’s you connect your Facebook account with Oculus Video to give you a personal 360 video feed based on the pages and people you follow. You can also watch non-360° videos that your friends or pages you follow share in a video theater environment.

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Social Engagement

The Oculus update also let’s you like and share your favorite Facebook 360 videos from within VR. Although Oculus teased us with an image that shows the ability to also “like” a post with Facebook reaction emojis, that feature did not appear available at the time of writing.

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Facebook Dynamic Streaming

In what is probably my favorite update, we now have dynamic streaming for 360° videos.

In February, Mark Zuckerberg took the stage at Samsung’s Barcelona Unpacked event to announce that 360° video playback on the Gear VR will get a significant resolution boost with “dynamic streaming” inside the Oculus Video player.

And it works! Seeing dynamic streaming first-hand put a huge grin on my face all over again.

Zuckerberg made the claim that “dynamic streaming” would quadruple the resolution quality of 360° streaming video in VR. It’s unclear if it’s quadruple the resolution, but it’s a beautiful thing, considering how frustrating the resolution was for viewing videos before the update.

This is a significant update that will pave the way for high quality 360° video live-streaming next.

So how does it work? “Dynamic streaming” means Facebook processes and stores all of its 360° videos in multiple resolutions. So when you are watching the video, only the best version will be shown for the spot you’re actually looking at – the rest is a lower resolution file that’s automatically swapped out as you look left and right. The change results in VR video that is higher quality and uses less data when being watched with a Gear VR headset.

Screenshots and Video Screen Capture

Also included in the update Thursday is the long awaited ability to take screenshots and record video from within the Gear VR headset.

If you hold the back button down near the touchpad to access “settings,” there is now a “utilities” tab that let’s you take a screenshot or capture video of what you are seeing in headset.

A square format still image or video file will be saved to your phone. Unfortunately, video capture does not support audio.

We have been waiting awhile for this feature on Gear VR so expect a lot more Instagram posts or Facebook updates from us in the future.

So what update are you most excited about? Let us know!

About the Scout

Jonathan Nafarrete

Jonathan Nafarrete is the co-founder and editor-in-chief of VRScout.

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