What is a Photo Sphere or 360 Degree Photo?

Mon, Mar 11, 2019

To explain the definition of a 360 degree photo, let's begin with the panorama, a photo that shows a wide view of the photographed space from the sides. You see panoramas as wide rectangles or as those that could be projected and wrapped on to a cylinder without distortion. They show more area along the x axis, or left to right than top to bottom, and are wider than a regular photo.

While panoramas provide a wide-angle view from left to right, 360 degree photos let you view a photographed space from above, below and to the sides, namely all around, in 360 degrees. The 360 degree photos are also referred to as spherical photos or photo spheres, because they can be projected onto a sphere. If you were to stand in the middle of the sphere, you would be able to look up, down and side to side, and continually see parts of the photo.

For this reason, 360 degree photos are used in video games, virtual reality applications and 3D architectural renders. They enable 360 tours of real estate as well as immersive virtual travel tours of vacation spots, offering the feeling of actually being in the place where the photo was taken.

Embedded within Aiambiq's floor plans are 360 degree, spherical photos. From different spots within the map, you can click to view that the 360 degree photo showing that area of the room or space. You can also view the embedded photos in virtual reality (VR) with a device, such as a Gear VR, Windows MR device, Oculus Rift or any of the head-mounted VR devices on the market.