About Google Cardboard
In 2014, the Google Cardboard was introduced by giving it out to all the attendees at the Google I/O, the idea behind this was to keep a low-cost system in order to promote interest and create awareness among masses about the VR headset and its applications.
The specifications of the Google Cardboard is put up on its official site and it is Open Source so people can go ahead and even build one themselves which takes it a step further when it comes to reaching a wider audience.You can anytime get your hands on a pre-manufactured one which costs around $15.
The Cardboard works well with both android and iOS phones making this VR headset very compatible. In January 2016, about 5 million Google cardboard has been shipped and over 1,000 compatible VR apps have been published.
Google Daydream is next as an enhanced VR platform which was announced in 2016 Google I/O and is yet to be released towards the end of this year.
Devices supported by Google Cardboard
The requirements for the device compatibility with Google Cardboard are(as per the manufacturer):
- Cardboard for an Android phone requires version 4.1 or higher.
- Cardboard for an iOS requires version 8.0 or higher
Apart from these requirements, you will also need your phone to have a Gyro sensor to function and a screen size which can range anywhere from 4-6-inches.
How to assemble Google Cardboard?
It comes as a flat cardboard having shapes cut out in it when removed out of your order shipment box. The slots which are to be joined are numbered and in about 10 minutes or even less than your cardboard VR headset will be ready.
It isn’t a herculean task, all you need to do is look for places having similar numbers and join them, this reminded me of the DIY toys you get in Cereal boxes for kids.
In a few minutes, you will have your Google cardboard headset ready and you can insert your phone in the front slot and get started.
Watch the video below to get a better insight on how to get started with assembling the Google cardboard:
Google Cardboard apps
There is a huge content compatible with the Google Cardboard app and that includes games, 360-degree videos, VR experiences and apps that cater to displaying stored content(videos or pictures) on your phone in VR.
When it comes to gaming, you might need a gamepad if it is not a simple point and click game, however, in this case even a cheap Bluetooth controller will work fine and that being said let’s have a look at few of the games and apps Google Cardboard has to offer.
Few popular games worth playing are Smash VR, Wrong Level, Road City VR, VR Minecart, OverReal, Galactic Rush, Wrong Voyage, Flats, Voxel VR and Galaxy VR. The video below will show you the gameplay of all the games mentioned and whether or not you need a gamepad to play them. So, I highly recommend you to check it out.
Few other experiences and apps include InMind VR, Sisters, Roller Coaster VR, House of Terror, Lanterns, A chair in a room, AAA VR Cinema,Cardboard, Cardboard Camera, Full Dive VR and more.
The Google cardboard comes with a lot of games and apps which are even compatible with other premium VR headsets and a few of them include the Merge VR, Noon VR, and Freefly VR. The Carboard team has been successful in getting people all into the VR concept by introducing this VR headset which has a great feature/price balance that anybody could ask for.
What I liked about the google cardboard
The cardboard VR headset is amazing when it comes to the games and apps compatibility. It just needs to be held in front of the face, you need the app running on your phone and Voila! You are ready for a VR experience without any other complicated settings.
Due to its simplistic design, the cardboard is comfortable to use and does not cause any fogging which is the case in most of the other VR headsets.
The quality of VR experience is way better than many other Chinese VR headsets which are even more expensive than the Cardboard.
You can get various other Cardboard headsets which have the straps so that you can secure the VR headset and you do not need to have your arms up all the time to hold the headset in place.
What I didn’t like about the VR headset
Since the original Google Cardboard has no straps, there is a lot of light that seeps inside the VR headset making the experience not so immersive.This problem anyway got sorted out later with the addition of straps on the headset.
The gameplay may not be as immersive as in the case of other premium VR headsets because even after the head straps you might find some problems when it comes to having no external light seeping inside but I would not categorize it as a major downside.
I have no serious complaints about this VR headset as overall it is a fun beginner level headset and I think the idea of having a DIY on this one sounds like a pretty interesting and intriguing (Click here for the DIY).Developers of Google Cardboard tried to make it a low budget headset so that it could appeal a wider audience and people can get well acquainted with the VR concept.
Making a VR headset is a little time consuming and it can be frustrating if you have no interest in craft work although you can always buy one of these from Amazon for around $15 to get started.
It can be used with both Android phones and iPhones and the quality of VR experience is reported the same in both cases. The apps, games, and experiences that come along with the Google Cardboard just add up to the experience as they always have something new in store.It is like entering into a new world of internet.
Would I suggest you to buy it?
Yes, it is definitely a buy.It a great way to start off with your VR experience and in case you are not sure if you want to go ahead and buy the high-end Merge VR, Noon VR or Gear VR then you should definitely try this VR headset to see if you like the taste of VR.
There are people who are worried about motion sickness and do not think investing in it is a good idea, in that case, you can actually make this VR headset or buy one and just check out if it really makes you feel sick and if motion sickness overpowers the gameplay.
So, go ahead and check it on amazon and the other kinds of customized cardboard VR headsets.
There are many DIY cardboard VR headsets and even they are pretty interesting, do check that out as well.
PHOTO CREDITS: www.play.google.com