Popular open source application VLC media player is now ahead to support 360-degree videos and photos, the company announced. So, from now on you will be able to play the spherical video formats in your Windows and Mac computers. The feature will also be available for other platforms such as Android, iOS and Xbox One.

It’s available now in VLC 360° technical preview and it lets you view both 360° videos and photos. However, the full version will arrive in VLC 3.0. Older VLC app versions won’t be supported (2.x.x versions). It is currently available for Windows 7 onwards and macOS 10.10 and later for Macintosh users.

To start watching 360° videos and photos in your desktop or laptop, go to the download page (visit here) then download VLC 360 Windows or VLC 360 MacOS. In case you already have installed an older version, the installer will ask you to upgrade it. Take note that this is just a technical preview version and future updates are expected. Below are the instructions on how to play a 360° content.

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How to Watch 360° Videos in VLC media player

You must have a 360-degree video to play before you can try it out. The preview build page has a sample video that you can download for a test drive. Download Eagle videoSurfers video.

  1. Open a 360° video file.
  2. Pan around by clicking and dragging using your mouse or the using the arrow keys on your keyboard.
  3. Play with different display modes such as —Zoom, Little planet, and Reverse little planet.

How to view 360° photo in VLC media player

VLC has a sample photo that you can download to try this feature. Download mountain panorama.

  1. To view the photo, press Ctrl+O.
  2. In the ‘Open File’ box, select ‘All Files’ from the file type drop-down. Select your 360° photo.
  3. The photo will start to play. Click the pause button and then click and drag using your mouse to pan around or the using the keyboard arrow keys. If you do not click the pause button, the photo will stay on your screen for a few seconds and then disappear. This is the media playing functionality of VLC interfering. Just pause the photo and pan around for as long as you want.