Young boy wearing VR goggles


Have you ever wanted to enter and “be in” the world of anime films? Then the app that fulfills such a wish is Google’s “Google Spotlight Stories”.

Like anime website, this application allows you to watch anime but from any angle at 360°, and even if it is just one anime, it is an app that you can enjoy even if you watch it with other various small stories. In addition, some works are VR compatible, and you can easily watch VR animation at home by purchasing equipment for using VR with a smartphone.

The Appeal of 360° Video: You can enjoy it as many times as you want

Have you ever wondered how a non-main character moves when he’s off-screen in a video? With a 360° video, you can look around the screen 360° and experience it like the protagonist of a movie. In addition, since you can enjoy the video from a viewpoint that you would not normally see, you can also enjoy it as a video with a completely different appearance even though it is the same work, such as watching it the first time normally and the second time watching a place you are a little worried about from the beginning to the end and chasing it.

How to use Google Spotlight Stories

When Google Spotlight Stories launches the application, it first displays a poster-like selection screen with the word “Find” that looks like a giant advertisement in front of a movie theater. Unlike other video apps such as YouTube and Niconico Video, it is a simple and clean selection screen with text titles and illustrations appearing on the full screen.

Select your favorite program and the video will start on full screen. The fact that it uses videos on full screen in both portrait and landscape screens is a feature of this application. In this state, when you change the orientation of the smartphone, the viewpoint in your video changes, and you can watch the video from that point of view. In other words, you can watch the animation from a 360° angle of freedom.


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Introduction to Animation

So what kind of animations are there in Google Spotlight Stories? This time, we will introduce two types of recommended anime from among several animations.

On Ice

“‘On Ice’ is an exciting sci-fi-themed ice show where the protagonist of this story is suddenly challenged by someone else and fights for the spotlight.”

(From the introduction in the app)

It is drawn in an atmosphere closer to Disney animation than Japanese anime, and it is a story in which the protagonist who wants to stand out struggles to keep in the spotlight while being blocked by various challengers. In science fiction, the familiar lightsabers and robots fighting for spotlights on the ice are powerful, and it is a work that makes you want to cheer for the protagonist who is blocked by many challengers and can not easily be exposed to the spotlight.

Rain or Shine

“It’s a perfect summer day in London, the sun is shining, the birds are singing, and everyone is walking with bouncy steps. Ella decided to put on new sunglasses and go out. There’s no way something can’t go wrong on a day like this.”

(From the introduction in the app)

The story begins with the protagonist’s house being sent sunglasses as a present to the protagonist. The protagonist is happy to receive sunglasses. However, these sunglasses were sunglasses that called for rain clouds! The protagonist wearing these sunglasses goes for a walk and gets into trouble in various places because of the sunglasses … It has become a story that said.

From the beginning to the middle of the story, another story unfolds at the same time as the story where the protagonist receives sunglasses. For example, the story of a cat that targets a pigeon and a pigeon that dexterously dodges it and escapes. The main character moves, and the location of the side story also moves in a natural way with the pigeon fleeing in accordance with the timing of the movement as a whole anime. In this way, the fact that people with any perspective can enjoy it is also one of the charms of this story.

VR specialized equipment is expensive, but you can enjoy VR cheaply and easily by using this app and VR goggles for smartphones for about 1000 yen. By all means, why don’t you use this app to experience VR easily?