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Facebook launches live 360° video streaming

Facebook_live_360Facebook is launching live 360° video streaming, with National Geographic to be the first publisher to use the new functionality.

Facebook: Live 360 will go live at 3pm Eastern Time today with a National Geographic live stream from the Mars Desert Research Station facility in Utah.

Facebook said that Live 360 video will be available to more pages in the coming months and will roll out to all pages and profiles in 2017.

“Live video on Facebook gives people an immediate, authentic window into what’s happening in the world right now; 360 video immerses viewers fully into the scene, letting them explore on their own and experience a new environment,” said Facebook in a blog post.

“We’re excited to combine these two formats with Live 360 video. Live 360 transports people into new experiences – right as they happen.”

Facebook first started to roll out 360-degree videos in the service’s News Feed last year, in an effort to take immersive content “a step further.”

It started to test live video streaming in the US in December, allowing users to broadcast from their phone in real-time. Facebook Live functionality was rolled out site-wide earlier this year.