So we now have a 360 panorama and it's time to share it to the world. The best medium for this is through Facebook and a dedicated website for this type of image.
A. Facebook 360
Before we upload our panorama to Facebook we need to resize it to 6,000 pix by 3,000 pix. Actually, we can upload the file as is. However, since we have a large file size, Facebook will compress it before it will be posted. As a result, resolution will decrease and some artifacts will appear on corners/edges.
Through trial and error, I found out resizing it to 6,000 pix by 3,000 pix will give us better result and sharper image.
After resizing, you can drag it to your Timeline or on our Page. You can use Upload option as well.
Facebook will automatically detect it as a 360 photo. You should see this text "Say something about this 360 photo..." this will be your indicator that it recognizes it correctly
After uploading it will produce a thumbnail with a small globe icon on it, click to Edit 360 Settings.
On this setting you can select the Starting View of your image. I choose the entrance for this one.
By the way if you uncheck Display as a 360 photo'. Your image will not be projected as 360 but as an equirectangular image. Meaning it will be displayed as flat image and not an interactive 360 projection.
Your image will looks like this after posting/publishing. You can move the image with mouse, arrow keys, or touch if viewed via mobile.
B. 360 Cloud Hosting Website
Aside from social media sharing, you can show your creation through a dedicated 360 hosting site. Think of it like Flickr for 360 and you can even make a complete virtual tour.
You can embed geo location, create hotspot information, change how you want your 360 to be seen.
One of the most popular among these sites is Round.me. For me their website is the most user-friendly and they support both desktop and mobile platform.
You can create an account by simply clicking SIGN UP. Use your Facebook or Twitter username, or sign up with an email.
Round.me offers both FREE and PRO subscription. The latter has monthly subscription fee, however it is tailored to professionals where they can customize privacy of their work, whitelist, custom embed features and much more.
For this example we will be using the basic account, it is free but contains cool feature set
After account registration, click the CREATE SPACE to begin creating a virtual tour (space)
Like with Facebook, you can just drag and drop your image or use the 'browse' link to select the location of your file.
As a free user we are only limited up to 10,000 by 5,000 px of image, either 8-bit JPEG or TIFF.
You could check the PRO version as it accepts larger filesize and support wider filetypes.
Upload time will depend on your file size and internet speed.
After our upload, an information box will appear. This is where you will put details about your image like Title of the space/scene, description, location, and categories.
To publish just toggle the ON switch besides Publish and select SAVE.
Your 360 is now published, you can move it with mouse or arrow keys.
On the upper right of your screen there are a lot of options and features available even as a free user.
You can share it with social media or embed it on a website through <iframe>
One of the coolest thing about this is you can change the projection of your 360 like a little planet.
Your image collection will be shown on your account profile.
Round.me has an active community of photographers posting amazing 360 everyday from different parts of the world.
You will be amazed and inspired on different images from around the globe. It will make you realized how powerful 360 photography is.
I hope this article set a good foundation on how to capture a 360 panorama from taking the shots, preparation, stitching and sharing. It is still an evolving industry there are so many techniques to be improved and discovered.
Again, 360 photography is a powerful medium where you can take your viewers to the location. It creates a sense of presence and interaction of the space. It lets people see or visually experience the surrounding.
I also prepared gallery sets both stills and 360, all taken with Tokina 107 AT-X DX|NH