Fraunhofer FOKUS Cloud-based 360° Video Playout for HbbTV

The Fraunhofer FOKUS Cloud-based 360° Video Playout for HbbTV enables high quality 360° video experience on low capability devices, such as Hybrid TVs (HbbTV), or in cases of constrained network connectivity e.g. on mobile devices. In 360° video the full spherical image of any direction of view is available in every moment while the spectator can freely change her individual perspective of view. The delivery of this huge source video material consumes a large bandwidth and results in a considerable processing load for the view projection and rendering. Devices as HbbTV Terminals are not capable, in terms of programmatic features, of performing the necessary image transformations. 

The 360° content shown in the demo video is created by DEEP Inc./MedienKontor. 
Further information related to the content shown can be found here: Arte 360°

The Fraunhofer FOKUS Cloud-based 360° Video Playout for HbbTV performs the rendering of the individual view on server side so that only the selected video content is streamed to the end device. This reduces the bandwidth needed or, put the other way around, allows for a higher quality video delivered on a given bandwidth. It also diminishes the requirements for the end device to simply play back a usual video stream in order to provide the full 360° video experience. 

The Fraunhofer FOKUS Cloud-based 360° Video Playout for HbbTV consists as depicted in the graphic above of the following components:

  • 360° Video Cloud Streaming Server: The 360° Video Cloud Streaming Server renders any kind of 360° content and streams the individual view to playback devices such as TVs and mobile devices. The 360° Video Cloud Streaming Server offers a REST API to control the individual view and playback state for each client. 
  • 360° Video TV Player: The 360° Video Cloud Streaming solution enables Smart and Hybrid TVs to provide 360° Video experience through usual video playback of the output from the cloud streaming server. Users can control their individual view and playback state via TV remote control.
  • 360° Video Control Mobile App: The mobile control app acts as a smart remote control for the 360° Video TV Player. It offers an easy-to-use UI to control the video playback and the angle of current view using touch, gestures or device orientation.
  • 360° Video Player Mobile App: The mobile cross-platform player app provides an immersive 360° video experience. It offers video playback and smart controls integrated in a single application.

The Fraunhofer FOKUS Cloud-based 360° Video Playout for HbbTV allows content providers and broadcasters to provide an innovative video experience on traditional TV screens. Viewers can experience video content with freely selectable views on their primary video viewing device – the large TV screen. The capability of view analytics allows content producers and advertisers to get specific information what viewers are interested in and what part of the scene they are watching, allowing detailed feedback about home user interests that wasn't previously available outside of limited lab trials. 

YouTube Video

Features and Assets

  • Transmission of interactive 360° video content to HbbTV and SmartTV devices
  • Navigable while just using a standard remote control
  • Companion Screen device support: view selection on second screen, presentation on main screen
  • Support of wide range of input resolutions
  • Cloud-based video transforming engine
  • Support of equi-rectangular and cubic source material
  • Quick change between predefined 'views of interest' 
  • Support for following predefined viewing paths and switching between them
  • Editing tool for content creators to define paths to follow actions
  • Analytics tools determine popular views, regions of user interest
  • Automatic 'follow what my friends see' or 'follow the majority' view selection
  • Expansion of advertisement possibilities for companies and advertisers
  • Web Based Playout using existing CDNs and MSE
  • Support of Streaming Devices: Chromecast, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV

This 360° video was recorded at the 5th FOKUS Media Web Symposium. Please contact us if you like to see such experience on HbbTV enabled TVs. Click on the video to navigate by mouse. 

Notice: This 360° Video may not work in all web browsers. Known working browsers are Chrome and Firefox on PC and Mac.