How To Use Facebook’s 360 Photo

Last week, in a post on CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s page, Facebook introduced 360-degree photos to all users. This means that everyone can upload a 360-degree photo of the location that they’re in, straight from their smartphone! Pretty cool eh? Here is a test one I did earlier today (please click to view it properly) on my iPhone 6S panorama setting – a proper 360 app would give you a much better coverage.

“We’re improving photos on Facebook so that people can share more immersive views of their world,” wrote Andy Huang, a product manager at Facebook. “For the first time, you can now easily share 360 photos on Facebook.”

What is a 360-degree photo?

A 360-degree photo is a photo that enables the viewer to see a 360-degree of a location. When you click and drag on the image, the user can explore the location much better compared to a standard photo. On a smartphone, you can move your phone around to move the view. Users with compatible Samsung’s phones will also have a Virtual Reality feature which will allow them to connect their Gear VR and have a more immersive experience with these images.

Creating these 360-degree photos couldn’t be any easier. You can take images with a Virtual Reality camera OR you can create a panorama image on your smartphone and upload it directly to Facebook. Facebook will then sort out the rest for you! Any panorama photos taken on an iOS device or a Samsung Galaxy phone; photospheres taken with the Google Camera, Street View, and Google Cardboard apps; and 360-degree camera images taken with the Samsung Gear 360, Ricoh Theta S, 360Fly, Giroptic 360 Cam, and the ALLie Camera.

Facebook can support the upload of 360 photos – however you cannot currently take them in app. The recommended way to take a 360 photo is with an app, a 360 degree camera or  fisheye lense – however iPhone’s panorama setting has been working well for most.

How can I use these in my business?

There are many different ways to use them in your business, and they are truly unique as many aren’t aware how easy it can be to create these images. There are hundreds of different images you can create to suit your business, but here are just some of the ones I have thought of below

  • Event photos
  • Venue advertisement (people can explore a room without even entering it!)
  • Behind the scenes
  • Showing off locations
  • Rooftop views (very popular especially in New York and London, though anywhere unique will do it)
  • Any panoramic photos previously taken on iOS
  • “what I see from my desk”
  • Real estate

Note: You do look a little silly as you’re slowly spinning when doing the panorama (see George’s face in the post above) so you may get some strange looks!