While Facebook and Sony have been busy with the Oculus Rift VR headset and Project Morpheus, respectively, Google went ahead and created a DIY cardboard headset that can turn your Android device into a virtual reality headset. Are we joking? Is Google? See for yourself.
The Google Cardboard is equipped with cheap lenses into which you slide your smartphone and then you hold your phone to your face to simulate a virtual reality headset. The cardboard is accompanied by a Cardboard app, which will let you, e.g. fly around in Google Earth, tour famous world places etc. It’s all sorts of weird, but at the same time, all sorts of brilliant. And by doing this, Google’s opened up the possibilities of VR to basically anyone.
“You hold the box up to your face, and suddenly you’re looking at a horizontal row of applications. To scroll back and forth, you just turn your head. Oh and you see that little washer that’s held to the side? That’s how you click on things! You slide it down in its little cardboard slot and it pops back up. It feels like a old school view-finder.”
Google’s got instructions for making the Cardboard and you only need a couple of items for it, including actual cardboard, velcro, magnets, rubber bands and lenses. It’s all very simple and fairly inexpensive – the whole thing will set you back for about $50. So, once it’s officially available for purchase, and you’ve got the time and patience, go ahead and try to make a VR headset of your own.