You will soon be able to share your feelings about 360-degree videos viewed on Gear VR goggles. On Wednesday, Facebook reported that it will begin rolling out support for its Reactions emojis for 360 videos watched on Samsung’s virtual reality goggles. Users will be able to add one of Facebook’s five emoji reactions – such as “like” or “love” to videos they’re watching, as well as see the reactions of other VR viewers.
The new support highlights the emphasis Facebook is putting on emphasis on virtual reality, a burgeoning field that promises to transport headset-wearing users to immersive, computer-generated environments, be it floating through outerspace or walking with dinosaurs.
No one’s quite sure how popular VR will be. Consulting firm Analysis Group in February estimated that through 2020, the revenue generated worldwide from virtual reality and augmented reality will total somewhere between $2.8 billion and $126 billion.
The company originally touted the feature back in March when it first began letting Gear VR users sign into their Facebook accounts on the VR headset to get a personalized feed of stories. Oculus says the new emoji reactions should be available for 360-degree photos, which the company began supporting earlier this month, in the coming weeks as well.
Video reactions are just the latest in a continued effort to bring social features to VR. We’re still a ways off from a full-blown Facebook VR app that could reasonably resemble the Metaverse. But Facebook and its Oculus subsidiary have started bringing some of the hallmark features of the world’s most popular social network to the realm of VR. Back in February, Facebook announced the formation of a social VR team dedicated to researching “how people can connect and share using today’s VR technology,” though its early focus appears to center on social game design.
Do you own a Gear VR? Shower your experience with it in the comments below.