360-degree video is typically recorded using either a special rig of multiple cameras, or using a dedicated camera that contains multiple camera lenses embedded into the device, and filming overlapping angles simultaneously. Through a method known as video stitching, this separate footage is merged into one spherical video piece, and the color and contrast of each shot is calibrated to be consistent with the others. This process is done either by the camera itself, or using specialized software such as Mistika VR or Kolor AVP that can analyze common visuals and audio to synchronize and link the different camera feeds together. Generally, the only area that cannot be viewed is the view toward the camera support.
The use of the term "virtual reality" to describe 360-degree video has been disputed, as VR typically refers to interactive experiences wherein the viewer's motions can be tracked to allow real-time interactions within a virtual environment, with orientation and position tracking. In 360-degree video, the locations of viewers are fixed, viewers are limited to the angles captured by the cameras, and cannot interact with the environment. The non-dynamic nature of video also means that rendering techniques cannot be used to reduce the risk of motion sickness.