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Google touts big VR, AR advances

If the numbers are any indication, people like Google's Cardboard viewer in a very big way.

They say that numbers tell the story. If that's true, then Google's $15 Cardboard virtual reality viewer plays an oversized role in the virtual reality market.

That's because more than 10 million of the heavy paper viewers have shipped since 2014, and Cardboard apps have been downloaded 160 million times from Google Play. "And 30 of those apps have more than 1 million downloads," Amit Singh, Google's head of AR and VR said Tuesday in a blog post and at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain.

Amit Singh, president of Google for Work, speaks at Web Summit​ 2015.

Amit Singh, Google's vice president of business and operations, AR & VR

Stephen Shankland/CNET

Singh used the opportunity to then chat up Daydream, Google's next-generation VR goggles.

"We've built Daydream with lessons learned from Cardboard," Singh wrote. "It's more comfortable, interactive, and immersive; as a result, people are spending more time using it -- about 40 minutes per week. With six Daydream-ready phones and 100 Daydream apps to explore, there are lots of devices and experiences to choose from." People primarily use the videos to watch video, he said.

Besides those impressive-sounding numbers, Singh also announced that Europe's Sky VR will offer premium VR content and said The Sims, Chelsea Kicker and The Wall Street Journal apps now can overlay 3D graphics over real world images.

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Read up on the latest from Mobile World Congress.