Samsung Gear VR is the most popular virtual reality headset in the world, with more than 5 million units sold (according to Samsung). That’s a pretty staggering achievement, because the Gear VR works only with Samsung Galaxy smartphones (more below).
In that respect it is similar to Sony’s PlayStation VR, locked to one kind of device. HTC’s Vive and the Oculus Rift work with any PC, but they require great computational power.
At the recent MWC event in Barcelona, Samsung showed off an updated version of the Gear VR, which comprises a headset into which you embed your phone, and a hand-held controller.
Today it announced that the new Gear VR is compatible with the all new
Samsung Galaxy S8. Samsung also announced a lot of new content, and a new camera device for creating VR content.
We’ve got hands-on reviews of the
Galaxy S8 and
Galaxy S8 Plus.
When does the Samsung Gear VR come out in the UK and the US?
The Gear VR is available to buy today in both the UK and the US. Go get it!
How much does the Gear VR cost?
In the UK
the Gear VR will set you back £99. US consumers will
have to find $99. That is incredibly cheap when compared to products such as Oculus Rift at £499 and PlayStation VR £349. The HTC Vive is a massive £759.
They aren’t the same thing, of course: but if you want an entry-level VR device and you already own a compatible phone, the Gear VR is almost a no-brainer. Not least because you don’t need also to shell out on an expensive PC or console.
In what colours does the Gear VR come?
You can have the Gear VR in any colour you like, as long as it is black.
What are the Gear VR’s headline specs?
With the controller, the Gear VR weighs 345g and measures 207.8 x 122.5 x 98.6mm. The controller alone weighs 65g.
The Gear VR has Accelerometer, Gyrometer, and Proximity sensors, and the controller itself has Accelerometer, Gyrometer, and Magnetic sensors. It takes AAA batteries, and has an in-use life of 40 days, according to Samsung.
Will my phone work with the Gear VR?
As well as the all-new Galaxy S8, the latest edition of the Samsung Gear VR is compatible with the Galaxy S7, S7 edge, Note5, S6 edge+, S6 and S6 edge.
Where can I find VR content for the Gear V?
This is the critical factor with VR headsets. Sony’s big boast with the PlayStation VR is the number of games it has, and both Oculus and HTC Vive have had some issues with volume and quality of content.
Samsung is no stranger to this issue: virtual reality is great, if there is some reality to experience virtually.
Samsung Unpacked event today, the tech giant announced a VR video service that it says will host thousands of pieces of engaging and immersive VR content.
Available at both
SamsungVR.com and via a dedicated Samsung VR app, Samsung VR contains more than 8,000 videos and 2,000 ‘premium experiences’, according to Samsung.
Samsung also says that users of the Galaxy S8, and the new Gear VR headset will now be able to create VR content, and share it via the service. Capturing and uploading VR content straight from the Samsung Gear 360 camera is also simple and seamless with the Gear 360 Manager app, says Samsung.