Virtual reality video is finally about to go mainstream as Google teams up with GoPro. The result is Jump.
Jump uses a 16 GoPro Hero4 camera rig to capture 3D video and images for an immersive VR experience.
Once the video is shot it takes thousands of computers to process the thousands of viewpoints. The result is a stereoscopic virtual reality video.
The Jump kit to be made available to developers later this year. But how can it be watched? YouTube is the answer.
From the summer YouTube will support Jump for VR video. All you need is YouTube on your smartphone using Google cardboard for true VR. Since the $20 Cardboard is a really cheap way of turning your current smartphone into a VR player this represents VR video getting into the mainstream at last.
So how does this work?
First raw camera data is used. Then calibration cleans up the images balancing them out. This is where Google algorithms make a 3D alignment to compensate for the difference in depth of objects in the scene. This then allows for variation of viewpoints on the image.
As you change perspective around and object you see its various sides, for example. The result is similar to the Amazon Fire Phone.
Jump could be the start of proper VR video being recorded and viewed by many, easily.