5 can’t-miss apps: Google Spotlight Stories, Vizo, ‘Prune’ and more

26 Jul 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Google Brings Its 360-Degree Movies App, Spotlight Stories, To iOS.

According to the Techcrunch.com, the app uses the phone’s motion sensors like its gyroscope and accelerometer to allow the users to explore different parts of the movies by looking around anywhere in a 360-degree sphere.Google Spotlight Stories, a mobile app featuring immersive, 360-degree animated films originally developed by Motorola ahead of its 2011 Google acquisition, has now made its way to iOS devices.

Google pointed out that the app offers stories built using 3D and 2D animations, 360-degree spherical ‘cinema-quality’ video, sound sphere audio and sensor fusion techniques. In short, what that means is that viewers can look around inside the animated content by moving their body and the phone to see different parts or angles of the story taking place. Unlike usual 2D videos where just the content within the current frame is visible, 360 degree videos provide a more immersive experience by letting you view everything around the current frame as well. The app features 2D and 3D animated films, including “Windy” which was made by ex-Pixar folk, and a new live-action film “Help“, made by Fast and the Furious franchise director Justin Lin. These video, like your usual 360 degree ones, take advantage of multiple sensors working in tandem within your smartphone, like accelerometer and gyroscope for providing an all-round 360 view within the video.

One of the original animations featured in Spotlight Stories when it debuted was a film called “Windy Days” by ex-Pixar moviemakers, which appeared on Moto X phones when the Android app rolled out. A few limitations on Android continue today, as the Google Play version still indicates that Spotlight Stories is “not yet compatible with all smartphones”. What’s interesting is that this latter movie, unlike the others, is noted as being “free for a limited time,” which indicates that Google may be planning to sell movies through this service in the future. However, because the app was originally intended for Motorola devices (like the Moto X), it didn’t immediately support a wide range of Android devices when it launched.

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