At F8 this April, we announced Facebook Surround 360, a high-quality 3D-360 hardware and software video capture system including a camera design and stitching code. We’ll be open-sourcing Surround 360 this summer to help accelerate the growth of the 3D-360 ecosystem — so developers can leverage the designs and code, and so content creators can use the camera in their productions.

We created Surround 360 to explore the technical and storytelling possibilities of 3D video in 360. To these ends, we created Here and Now. It’s a short film professionally shot entirely with Surround 360 that transports you to the middle of Grand Central Terminal and immerses you in the stories of people passing through. It was a technically hard shoot — we wanted to show the emotive elements of the scene through the detail in the faces of the characters while still delivering the power of the expansive setting.

Here and Now showcases the potential of 3D-360 video for telling rich stories, sharing realistic experiences, and connecting people with one another. It also illustrates Surround 360’s ability to shoot high-resolution spherical video more quickly and easily than ever before — in fact, Here and Now took just five weeks to produce, thanks to Surround 360’s new stitching technology that marries video from 17 cameras, drastically reducing post-production stitching work. Normally, 3D videos take months in post-production alone.

We hope Here and Now will inspire others across the industry to harness the creative potential of 3D-360 video for telling stories and bringing people together in new ways.

Here and Now is available in two formats: A standard 1K monoscopic (2D) version is available in News Feed, and a 3D version is available in the Oculus store in the featured video section for viewing in Gear VR.

Check it out today on Gear VR and on Facebook.

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