Ever heard of Google’s weird cardboard VR headset? “Google Cardboard VR” is what happens when bunch of nerdy and geeky peeps from silicon valley decide to play with pieces of cardboard instead of their PlayStation 4. The first time I came across Google’s Cardboard VR headset, I was like “..no..no..no.., there is no way in hell this piece of crap is going to work”. Of all the zillions of useful materials out there, why use a freaking cardboard? How the hell is this shit going to survive strain and stress? These questions and more got me curious about Google’s new pet project, so subsequently I did what any sane dude in my position would do – I googled it. After some minutes of googling, my position on the VR headset had not changed much, only that this time I actually thought of getting one for my self. Believe me, if I were you, I would probably start saving for one. Not convinced you should? Ok here is why:
The Google Cardboard VR headset is an ugly looking piece of gadget, but surprisingly it works quite well.
Image credit: Google
With a price tag of about $30 dollar, getting your very own VR headset is way easy. Errrm.. it’s made of cardboard but it’s still does quite a good job anyway.After all, your smartphone contains all the necessary gyroscopic sensors and positioning
systems to accurately track your head movements. So why buy a dedicated VR headset that cost like you’re building a space ship when you could just improvise by sliding the damn phone into an ugly looking but useful cardboard. Facebook’s Occulus Rift cost about $400 , Sulon Technology’s Sulon Cortex Headset cost a whooping $500, HTC’s HTC Vive Headset cost close to $300 and the Avegant Glyh makes others look cheap with a $600 price tag. Using nothing but cheap cardboards, some lenses, some magnets, velcro, a rubber band, an app, and some very Easy-to-follow instructions, you can transform your Android handset into a full-blown VR gadget. If like me you don’t have an issue with having a piece of cardboard hanging off your head as you struggle your way through a parallel universe, then you are up for a wonderful VR experience.
Putting this ugly piece of cardboard on your face while you “ooh” and “ahh” through a wonderful VR experience isn’t going to be easy. but like me if you don’t give a damn about who is watching then you are covered.
Image credit: Wearable.com
Google Inc. Ooops it’s now Alphabet Inc , are obviously never short of creatively weird ideas. Though using cardboards to create crazily ingenious stuff isn’t kinda really new an innovation but popping a smartphone into a piece of ugly cardboard an expecting a VR experience is definitely something else. You just get the cardboard, fold it, push in your smartphone and brace yourself for a futuristic VR experience. With just a cardboard your dreams of flying through space, fighting aliens or defying gravity can become reality (at least in your dreams or do I say VR dreams).
Image credit: Wikipedia
The first version of Cardboard could fit smartphones with screens up to 5.7 inches and used magnets as input buttons, which required a compass sensor in the phone. At Google I/O 2015 event an updated version which works with smartphones of up to 6 inches was unveiled. The new version replaces the magnet switch with a conductive lever that riggers a touch event on the phone’s screen for better
compatibility across devices. After initially only supporting Android, Google’s cardboard demonstration app also saw a port to the Apple’s iOS mobile operating System. Google’s first attempt at VR reality with its Google Glass didn’t go so well, however the weird looking cardboard might just do what the Glass with its high end spec’s couldn’t.