Samsung mostly sells mobile phones, but they are branching out with their line of Samsung Gear accessories. Virtual reality enthusiasts are particularly interested in the new Samsung VR headset. This device allows Samsung users to turn their mobile phone into a virtual reality device with just a few simple adjustments. It is powered by the popular Oculus software that also creates VR for computers. Keep reading to learn more about the Samsung Gear VR headset, and decide if it is right for you.
Samsung VR Headset: Specs
|Resolution||Varies depending on phone|
|Field of View||101 degrees|
|Sensors||Proximity sensor, Gyro sensor|
|Controls||Touchpad on headset, or Bluetooth connected controller|
|Platform||Samsung Gear VR, powered by Oculus|
The software used in the Samsung Gear VR headset is the same software used for the computer-tethered VR headset, Oculus. It is capable of smoothly rendering games with crisp detail. However, there may be some slight lag and performance issues, since a phone is not capable of the same computing power as a PC. The field of view is also slightly diminished due to the use of a mobile phone. Though the specs might seem diminished when compared to tethered VR headsets, they are still quite impressive in the field of mobile VR.
Pros & Cons[review]
Samsung VR Headset: Design & Requirements
The only requirement for the headset is a compatible phone. It works with many Samsung phones, including the Galaxy Note 5, the S6, the S6 edge, the S6 edge+, the S7, and the S7 edge. The headset has a simple, functional design that consists of a visor and a headstrap. The visor portion contains an area to store the smartphone, and docking connectors to make the smartphone work with the headset. On the right side is a touchpad full of controls. The headset attaches to the head with fabric bands that are secured with a hook and loop fastener.
Samsung VR Headset: Controls & Display
Due to the fact that the Gear is a mobile VR headset, it does not offer quite as advanced visuals. However, Samsung phones do have a great display, so you can still get fairly realistic, crisp, and smooth displays. Samsung has recently released a new handheld controller that contains an accelerometer, a touchpad, a gyroscope, and magnetic sensors for a more controlled experience. Without this controller, you will either need to find another controller that works with the Gear VR, or you will need to constantly raise your hand to the touchpad on the headset.
Samsung VR Headset: Setup
The first step in setting up VR on your phone will be downloading the Oculus app and creating an account. Setup for the Samsung Gear VR headset is very quick after you have installed the Oculus and the Gear VR apps. All you will need to do is open the front portion of the visor, and plug the phone into the docking connector. You can then lock it into place with a latch, and put on the headset. The headset will fit around your head, and then, you can use the sliding latches to tighten it until it fits.
Samsung VR Headset: User Experience
Most users praise the easy and intuitive design of the Samsung VR. People find that the sensors work well, and they are particularly impressed by the proximity sensor that makes your device turn on VR mode when you wear the headset. Though the lack of hand motion sensors can make gaming difficult, it is still possible with a controller. The Oculus app store provides enough games to amuse users, but some feel that the selection is limited. All users were positive about the video options available via the Netflix app, which makes it look like you are in a theater.
Though not as impressive as most tethered VR headsets, the Samsung Gear VR headset is still a very fun gadget. The lack of motion controls, and the lower processing power of a smartphone slightly breaks the immersion and realism of the experience. However, if you already have a compatible phone, it can be a useful and enjoyable accessory. The Samsung headset makes viewing movies more enjoyable, and gives you access to some innovative games. Do you think the Samsung VR headset is a smart purchase? Let us know in the comment section below!