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You can now share 360-degree photos on Facebook

Just upload a panorama shot from your smartphone.

Phil Walter / Getty

Facebook now supports 360-degree photos, its latest effort to get more people comfortable with watching and creating content typically found in virtual reality.

That means you'll soon see 360-degree photos in your News Feed, and can easily upload your own by posting a panorama photo that you took on your smartphone. Facebook will then format that photo so it offers a 360-degree view as you turn and tilt your phone, or click and drag if you're using a desktop.

Facebook has supported 360-degree videos since last fall, which is cool, but difficult for the average person to create without special (and sometimes expensive) video equipment. The 360-degree photos offer a lower bar to actually posting something.

Facebook's interest in 360-degree content seems directly tied to its interest in virtual reality. These 360-degree videos and photos look best when you're wearing a headset, and Facebook encourages people to view them in VR. One of the barriers to selling VR headsets is convincing people they'll have enough things to watch or look at. Getting its user base to create 360-degree photos and videos might one day make VR more appealing.

Or maybe it's just a fun gimmick to get you posting more in News Feed.


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