When you first read the name Google Cardboard, you wonder what in the heck Google is doing now. Google is working on a way to bring virtual reality to the “common folks.” Google Cardboard is trying to provide more people with a cheap, easy device and is a big hit among early adopters.
What exactly is Google Cardboard? It is a foldout piece of cardboard smartphone mount, which you add things like lenses, magnet, a fastener and rubber band to hold it to your face. You use the Google Cardboard to turn your Android phone into a virtual reality headset. Google Cardboard was a project from the 20% projects- where employees can work on side project ideas as long as they work on their work most of the time. The success of this project has led other companies to look at the design and use it to create cheap, easy to construct virtual headsets that will work other smartphones like Apple.
You build with cardboard, you can use your own, add 40 mm focal distance lenses with magnets, Velcro and a rubber band to hold your phone in the right place. After you build your Google Cardboard, you place your phone in the right slot and then look through the lenses. Google Cardboard places your phone the perfect distance from the lenses to create a 3D effect. You can use compatible apps and place the virtual reality Google Cardboard and place it up to your face. You can move your head around that the image on your smartphone responds, with the demo Street Vue, you can walk around Paris while moving in your actual surroundings – because it interacts with your surroundings.
Google Cardboard comes equipped with an NFC chip and it can launch your “Cardboard app” when you place your phone into the cardboard headset. The magnet inside the cardboard is used to help you touch the screen and it is like a button since you cannot access your screen when your phone is inside the cardboard.
What can you do with Google Cardboard? For one, there are plenty of apps out there that is compatible with Google Cardboard- and this includes games. You can access demos such as Google Earth and “fly” around the world. Another thing you can do with Google Cardboard and watch YouTube movies or videos like you are watching on a big screen. One of the games is Lamper. It is built for virtual reality and works with Google Cardboard and makes you feel right in the game. There is an app called VR Cinema and it is for Google Cardboard. VR Cinema takes MP4 files and splits up the screen to give you a 3D experience with any movie (you got that right ladies- Magic Mike can be in 3D).
While Google Cardboard cannot change everything into 3D, Google has made it easy for developers to create games and apps to use with Google Cardboard. Games and apps should increase giving you more options in the future.
What is the exact cost of Google Cardboard? It will set you back about twenty bucks. You will have to follow the directions and “put it together.” There are cheaper versions, but make sure that your phone will fit properly in the slot in order to get the best experience necessary. If you do not want to purchase the kit, you can download instructions on building your own Google Cardboard virtual reality headset instructions- but remember you will have to buy the 40 mm lenses as well as the other items needed.
I cannot wait to order me a Google Cardboard and try this experience……