WebSite X5 Evo and Pro

If you are looking for a way of creating and sharing interesting visual contents online, you should definitely consider a trend which is getting more and more popular on the Web: spherical photographs.

Spherical photographs aren't more difficult to create than any other photo, but it's more engaging for the users because it gives the impression of being immersed in the place photographed and being able to explore it in all possible directions.

On websites, 360° spherical photographs can come at hand in many occasions: car dealers could use them to show how cars look like from the inside, real estate firms can show houses and flats, hotels can display their rooms, tour guides can give a hint on the emotions connected to a place and much more. You can add 360° spherical photographs on your website using the Photo Sphere Viewer Optional Object. Check it out on the Preview page.

In this guide, we will cover the following topics:

What are spherical photographs

Spherical photographs are full panoramic photographs that capture a 360-degree field of view and that enable users to explore the place by moving in any direction, not just right or left, which is the case with normal panoramic photographs, but also upward and downward.

In other words, regular panoramic photographs are pictures unfolding on the side surface of a cylinder, whereas spherical photographs unfold on the whole surface of a sphere.

In this way, spherical photographs give the impression of actually being physically in the place photographed, which results in a very engaging and interactive experience. 

How to create spherical photographs

Thanks to smartphones and the many Apps available, anyone can create spherical photographs nowadays: you actually don't necessarily have to be a professional photograph with a professional camera and with the appropriate lens.

All you need to do is to make sure your smartphone has a good quality photo sensor with enough pixels (more than 8 megapixels), so to avoid grainy photos. It is also necessary for the smartphone to have a gyroscope among the available sensors: it is necessary to understand the phone orientation and the direction in which it moves.

Once you're sure you can rely on these few tools, you can choose the App to use. There are many, including free ones, for example P360 for iOs and 360 Photo Sphere Camera for Android.

All these Apps tend to work similarly. After starting the App, the display will show a kind of grid: follow it by framing all the points that are proposed to you. In this way, the App will have all the necessary images and will unite them to create a single spherical photograph, which you will be able to share and use as you want.

No matter the App you use, there are some aspects you can pay attention to to further improve the quality of your spherical photographs:

  • make sure the light is the same for every photo you take;
  • possibly mount your smartphone on an easel on which to mount your smartphone.

How to import spherical photographs with Photo Sphere Viewer 

Now that your 360° spherical photographs are ready, you just need to add them on your website using the Photo Sphere Viewer Optional Object:

  • Double-click on the Photo Sphere Viewer Object to access the settings window.
  • Import the image file related to the spherical photograph you want to use. 
  • If you want to, you can set the image to take on all the available space of the browser window by activating the Full Height option. Alternatively, you can set the wished image height in pixels. 
  • You can decide to display the control bar. In any case, users will be able to move in any direction by dragging the image with the right mouse button and zoom in and out using the wheel. The control bar reports the necessary commands to zoom and move on the photo, as well as the one to display it full screen. You can also add a Label, namely a title or a brief description of the spherical image.
  • With the Autoplay option, the spherical image isn't still, but it is displayed in motion, so as to invite users to explore it. In this case, the control bar also reports the button to stop/play the automatic image rotation.
  • Finally, you can activate the Fisheye effect to your image, so to accentuate its perspective distortion, making it even more curved and enveloping.
  • Click OK when you are happy with the result.

#tip - Preview. The local preview Browser may display a substitute image instead of the spherical photograph added with the Photo Sphere Viewer Object. If you are working with the Pro edition, you can click on to display the preview on another Browser among those available on your PC. In any case, the spherical photograph will be correctly displayed once the website is online.  

Are you curious to use this Object on your website pages? Install Photo Sphere Viewer now

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