"Samsung Gear VR: Half a year later, still the best virtual reality that runs off a phone"
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CNET First Look
CNET First Look
Samsung Gear VR: Half a year later, still the best virtual reality that runs off a phone
Welcome VRnauts, I'm Scott Stein in virtual reality wearing the Samsung Gear VR for the Samsung Galaxy S6.
You remember six months ago, I had taken a look at one of these for the Samsung Note 4. Hello and I thought it was an interesting view into virtual reality.
Is the ability to transport yourself wearing stereoscopic display that makes you feel like you're in a three dimensional world that you can look all around in.
You can get Google Cardboard that's super cheap, or you can get this system, which is the highest quality one you can get that works to the phone, but this version works just with the SX Last year's version works just with the Note 4.
It has the same types of optics, using the same type of Quad HD resolution display that's on this.
But there are a few more tweaks.
Here there's a fan now to cool down the lenses to prevent fogging where you're wearing it.
And there's a micro USB pass through, which means that you can charge these up while you're wearing them or having the phone in the display.
There is an added track pad here.
This allows you to navigate and tap in lieu of being able to move your hands which you can't do yet in mobile virtual reality.
Setting it up is simple.
You just slide the phone in and dock it, and click it into place and it works without wearing glasses.
I have really bad vision, but when you put these on, there's a dial on top that adjusts focus.
You could just kick back in a chair, and be in your own virtual movie theater, like I am.
The only problem is that the Gear VR is not that portable.
This set, you know, doesn't really fit into anything that's smaller than a backpack.
So I kinda don't take it on the train all that much.
Plus you'd be sitting on a train with this thing on your head.
Maybe that's a good thing.
What's new is a revamped app store.
Oculus, who has partnered with Samsung on this headset, has a whole collection of mobile apps, now dozens and dozens, some of which you can pay for, others of which are free.
The downside is this.
Google's "CardBoard", that cute little foldable cardboard player, you just pop any phone into it.
And it works with any app that's available on IOS or on the Google Play Store, that says it's VR compatible.
Pop it in, try it out and it probably works.
Plus, it works with YouTube and its panoramic VR videos.
This does not allow you to tap into that.
Every time you pop in the phone, it's launching you right into the Oculus experience, which is not connected to the rest of your Android phone.
Hopefully someday it will be, it's not now.
This does pair with a Bluetooth game controller, so you can actually play games and feel a little more connected.
but if you want stuff that's going to feel really next wave, there will be a lot.
Oculous is planning a larger scale effort in mobile VR down the road.
This is a innovators edition which means its kind of a collectors item.
The Samsung Gear VR costs an extra two hundred dollars on top of your phone, so it's not cheap.
But if you want the best that mobile VR has to offer right now The Samsung Gear VR is it.
I'm Scott Stein, back in VR.
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