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Facebook bought a startup to make its 360-degree videos sound better

Facebook wants more VR content. This acquisition might help.

A man in an Oculus VR headset Oculus / Facebook

Facebook on Monday acquired Two Big Ears, a startup that builds audio software for virtual reality and 360-degree videos. Two Big Ears shared the news via a blog post.

The company's software is used to make the sound that accompanies a 360-degree video feel more lifelike — things like hearing sounds from the location where they actually occur in the video.

As part of the acquisition, Two Big Ears is making its audio software free to creators. It's yet another incentive from Facebook to get content creators making stuff for VR, an industry it bet big on two years ago with its $2 billion acquisition of Oculus.

The general feeling is that the VR headsets are better than the actual content you can watch on them. Facebook has encouraged creators to make more 360-degree content for both Oculus and Facebook, and it sounds like making Two Big Ears' software free is yet another carrot.

A Facebook spokesperson declined to share a deal price for the acquisition. Two Big Ears co-founders Abesh Thakur and Varun Nair are both joining Facebook along with other "key members," the spokesperson added.

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