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Immerse Virtual Reality Headset – turn your smartphone into a 3D wonderland of fun for just $45 ]Review]

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There’s no question that 3D is a bit of a joke nowadays. The problem is the industry thought we’d love it enough to pay lots of money for the TVs, the movie tickets and all the other bits and pieces. But we didn’t. Our bad. But now there’s a new genre of fun budget 3D products which might just bring it back to life, and we’ve got our grubby mits on one example to test out.

The Immerse Virtual Reality Headset works with any compatible sized smartphone (iPhone or Android) and lets you view content in glorious 3D virtual reality. And it actually works really well. Check out our video below for a hands-on experience.

What’s cool about it, apart from the low price, is the fact that it’s actually quite comfortable to wear, with a cushioned eye area, a nice strap, and adjustable lens settings so you can adjust to your eye line.

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The result is a very useable unit, and because you can download loads of free (and commercial) 3D/VR content from the app stores which have been created for Google Cardboard, you can get going with some fun right away. Just do a search for ‘3D’ or ‘VR’. Right now most of the content is limited to things like rollercoasters, games and a few rather naff type animated creature apps, but we can see this whole area taking off as more content comes online.

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Think of it like a 21st century Viewmaster and you’re close. It’s also possibly got a future as a more serious visual aid for things like DIY and hobbyists, because the whole experience is very immersive. You turn your head and the visuals track your movement via the phone’s accelerometer, so it’s just like looking around in real life. Very cool.

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You can use it with your headphones too, if you punch out one of the two tabs on either side of the headset, for an even more immersive experience, and since it’s all very low tech, there’s almost nothing to break. Yes, Google Cardboard and other such products are cheaper, but they will likely wear out over time, whereas this plastic version is likely to be much more resilient.

Conclusion
This new 3D product is actually a load of fun, and while there are limitation – we really wouldn’t advise you to wear them for extended periods of time, for your eyeball’s sake – and the software apps are still pretty limited, it’s the sort of product which could drive a new surge of interest in the whole 3D arena. The low price and simplicity means it’s a shoe-in for kid’s gifts, and everyone has access to a smartphone nowadays. Don’t they? Like it!

Price: $45.79 / £29.99

Nigel is the managing editor of the Red Ferret, as well as a freelance columnist for the Sunday Times newspaper in London. Loves tech and fancies himself as a bit of a futurist, but then don’t we all?

Nigel – who has written posts on The Red Ferret Journal.


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