Social media platform Twitter has joined YouTube, Facebook, and others in offering panoramic live views, signalling a greater use of real-time video that is part of a broader trend of immersive experiences and virtual reality – but not everyone can post for now.
Live 360-degree videos will be marked with a “LIVE 360” badge and users can change the angle of their view by either moving their phones or swiping their screens, Alessandro Sabatelli, Twitter’s director of augmented reality and virtual reality, wrote in a blog post on Dec. 28, 2016.
The new feature will allow users to get an “inside look with well-known personalities and go behind the scenes at exclusive events,” Sabatelli added.
While all Twitter and Periscope users will be able to watch live 360-degree videos, not everyone will be able to broadcast them. Only a limited number of partners can currently do so, although a blog post from the Periscope team states that the feature will be “roll(ed) out … more broadly during the coming weeks.”
Twitter just recently allowed users to livestream video from the Twitter app directly earlier this month. Previously, users had to stream live video via the company’s Periscope app.
Twitter’s push into live video move comes as other online players have adopted the feature in a bid to drive engagement among users. Facebook first rolled out its Facebook Live feature in August 2015 and launched live 360-degree video earlier this month, broadcasting from the Mars Desert Research Station in Utah. Live video broadcasting is also available on Facebook’s Instagram platform.
It also marks a clear departure from the popular, but limited 140 character limit for a tweet.
Nevertheless, the new 360-degree video feature failed to result in any material effect on Twitter shares, which were down 1.32 percent from the previous session at $16.39.
Besides stagnating average monthly user figures, the troubled social media company has also suffered from a brain drain. Twitter’s COO, CTO and VP of product have all departed from the company in the span of 2 months. 60 percent of the company’s top executives have left since the beginning of the year, according to Recode.