How to Turn Your Android into a Virtual Reality Device?

The fashion of virtual reality, carrying enough dead years he returned in 2012. The reason? The company Oculus VR surprised with his virtual reality helmet prototype and did a considerable amount of money ($2.5 million) through Kickstarter and support (more than 10,000 purchases of the prototype). All this culminated in 2014 with the purchase of Oculus VR from Facebook by the incredible amount of $ 2,000 million.

I.e., virtual reality has returned and everyone who prepares is there, from Samsung with their VR Gear up to Google with its Android project for virtual reality. And precisely thanks to Google We can convert our now Android on a virtual reality device without spending a lot of money.

Google Cardboard, virtual reality cheap

Every year Google celebrates its programmers, Google I/O Conference. And attendees received gifts, sometimes very expensive (Although everything is pass, attend the Conference is quite expensive, basically returns the money in the form of technology that really go to those who have genuine interest).

Last year, in addition to a smartwatch, Google gave a very curious thing called Cardboard. This box (translation and literal description) allows you to convert an Android on a virtual reality device.

The trick is that through a special application, the screen is divided into two, and shows different images to each eye. Box allows to be set at a short distance from our eyes and a couple of lenses easier to approach. A very cheap and effective solution. And the best, since Google gave Cardboards in the Google I/o many engaged to create their own cardboard boxes by buying materials and many companies to launch their own really ridiculous prices.

We can therefore buy a clone of the original Cardboard and easily convert our Android on a virtual reality device. There are many applications in Google Play to use the Cardboard and is the cheapest way to what’s in the market for virtual reality. We just need our mobile.

What to keep in mind to buy a Cardboard?

Before we go to buy a clone of the Cardboard (that I will call generically Cardboard, taking the brand as a product) there are some things to consider. There are not many but important to not fail in our purchase.

The first thing that must be taken into account is that for the Cardboard work our mobile must have gyro. That is, you have to detect motion when we move the head, otherwise the experience will not be satisfactory. It is an element that many mobile but some of the middle and lower ranges do not. For example the Moto G 2013 does not. It can be seen with applications like Antutu looking all hardware that has our device.

The second thing that must be taken into consideration is the quality of the virtual reality that we have, and this is determined by our device screen. Much higher density of pixels less will see them (it must not forget that the phone will be a few centimetres from our eyes and also with a lens). Therefore will look much better with high-end terminals which with the low range. Even so, I can say that with a Oneplus One (401 DPI) pixels are. The screen, by the way, also determines the size of the Cardboard that we want to buy, have a normal terminal, a phablet, have to look at it well is not the same when choosing the model.

Once we are clear that our phone is sufficient to become a virtual reality device you have to choose the quality of Carboard that we want to buy. The original Cardboard carton is, but we have to take into account that there are plastic models that are more resistant (and which is not dirty with sweat, for example). Of course, the price will be higher.

Another important thing to keep in mind is if we have magnetic button. The original Cardboard has a button on the side, which is nothing more than a magnet that moves down. This movement is detected by the magnetic sensor which bring some phones (serves to turn on the screen when there is a lid) and if the application has it in mind allows a certain interaction with her. As original Carboard button has many applications that exist in Google Play for Cardboard support button. Personally I recommend having it, although the majority of games that need some more advanced control require a bluetooth gamepad.

The original Cardboard (and therefore many, but not all, of its imitations) bring a tag NFC in the part of cardboard where support. The idea is that when you put the phone in the Cardboard opens automatically the official implementation of Google Cardboard or you want to. This should set label with applications like e.g. NFC Tools. I especially don’t think that it is something very useful, but if you are interested in that at least the label have 144 bytes of capacity.

Where can I buy in Spain a Cardboard?

Buy Cardboard in Spain is very easy. The most popular online shops have models and the only thing we have to do is be clear about the type of Cardboard we want to refine the search: size, material, magnetic button and NFC.

On eBay, we found hundreds of models available, all with prices ranging from 3 euros and peak to 20 euros. Normally the cheaper models are very similar to the original Cardboard, of carton and come unassembled, although the installation is very simple as it comes already prepared and put eyeglasses. More expensive models tend to be plastic and already mounted, although sometimes they do not bring magnetic button and no adjustments can be made (for example I in order to use the Cardboard glasses with cuts, something that could not have been done if it were plastic did).

If you give us more security always can go to Amazon, there also there are quite a few Cardboard models, although most by registered, not for the own Amazon sellers. Prices also vary with the quality.

If we encourage us directly to purchase in China we can see shops as Aliexpress, there We can find Cardboard from less than 3 euros. The only downside is that delivery times normally exceed 4 weeks and impatience we can.

And if we want to officially supported by Google, on their official website of Cardboard, apart from recommending applications, it also recommends some manufacturers of Cardboard. They are more expensive and sometimes only supplied in the United States, but we make sure that the quality is good.

Do you fancy them to turn your Android into a virtual reality device?