Google Cardboard is a virtual reality platform developed by Google for use with a head mount for a any smart phone.
The Cardboard software development kit (SDK) is available for BOTH Android and iOS operating systems. The SDK's VR View allows developers to embed VR content on the web as well as in their mobile apps.
Named for its fold-out cardboard viewer, the platform is intended as a low-cost system to encourage interest and development in VR applications - and it has proved immensely popular.
Users can either build their own viewer from simple, low-cost components using specifications published by Google, or purchase a pre-manufactured one.
The parts that make up a Cardboard viewer are a piece of cardboard cut into a precise shape, 45mm focal length lenses, magnets or capacitive tape, a hook and loop fastener such as velcro, a rubber band, and an optional near field communication (NFC) tag. Google provides extra recommendations for large scale manufacturing, and pre-assembled kits based on these plans
To use the platform, users run Cardboard-compatible applications on their phone, place the phone into the back of the viewer, and view content through the lenses.
Google announced an enhanced VR platform called Daydream in 2016, and through March 2017 over 10 million Cardboard viewers had shipped and over 160 million Cardboard app downloads had been made.
While the Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, and Sony Playstation VR represent VR at the high end, you don’t have to spend a fortune to get a decent taste of VR.
Google Cardboard is making VR accessible to wider culture - while not compromising an incredible experience for a cheap price tag.
Here, we have compiled a handy list of the top reasons you should hire Google Cardboard for your next event:
Google Cardboard headsets are built out of simple, low-cost components making them a cost-effective option.
If you don't want to craft your own headset, pre-assembled kits based on various plans are available from multiple vendors.
Since you can't touch your phone's screen while it's inside the Cardboard, Google has provided a magnet on the outer-side of the headset that, when moved, acts as if you've pressed your screen with a button. It uses your phone's magnetometer, which is usually used for compass functions, to sense this and control it while it's in the cardboard.
All of the items needed to craft your own from plans are available easily from most hardware stores, as well as being cost-effective.
Because of the option to craft your own from plans, the Google Cardboard also offers a lot of room for personalisation for those that want to get creative.
Google Cardboard is incredibly lightweight and easily portable.
It comes with an NFC chip that will automatically launch your official Cardboard app when you place your phone into the headset.
Google Cardboard is one of the simplest virtual reality headsets to set up and use, with only three basic steps for setup: Assemble the Google Cardboard, download VR applications and scan the QR code to personalize settings, then place the smartphone in the cardboard to experience VR.
Google Cardboard’s design means it’s already geared toward working with your smartphone as is, so there is no need to worry about the hassle of downloading or installing extra stuff to make it work.
There’s also a brief and easy-to-understand tutorial demo that shows you briefly how to use it.
Despite the cheap components, Google Cardboard still offers an amazing immersive experience for users.
Unlike the Gear, Google Cardboard can be used with multiple different mobile devices.
Google Cardboard works with numerous apps, including games, video apps, and more available simply from the Google Playstore, or even just on YouTube.
Google Cardboard is a relatively low-tech option. Higher-end devices can track your head, and some can even track your arms through motion controllers. They also have better graphics and special improvements that make them feel real to your mind.
As well as that, while the Cardboard app can help you find some of the content, a lot of it is spread out meaning you need to search hard for a variety of apps.
Most Cardboard viewers are cheaply built and uncomfortable for longer play sessions. It’s also possible to experience nausea if you play Cardboard too long, so it’s really meant for shorter play sessions.