SAMSUNG GEAR VR - REVIEW



 I was intending to get one of the VR headsets as I was making my wishlist a few weeks ago. With all the previews and tech demos going around, it is hard to pick one that I will be happy with.

What is in the market currently, Google Cardbox and Samsung Gear Vr, are two of the gadgets that can be easily bought in Singapore. But because I am already a Samsung Note 5 user, I thought Gear Vr would be a natural choice.

I got mine the Gear VR 2 days ago from Challenger at 313. I was also surprised that the price in Challenger is $10 cheaper (with Value Club member discount) as compared to the ones selling at Samsung Shop in basement 2 of 313.



Before I got home to try it out, I didn't know what to expect. But nevertheless, I was excited to see what the Gear VR can do. After trying it out for 2 days, I came to this conclusion - If you have the current generation flag ship Samsung Smart Phones; Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 Edge or Note 5, the Gear VR IS A MUST BUY!



PAIRING WITH THE NOTE 5



I consider myself lucky as the Note 5 is a phablet with greats specs with a larger than life, 5.7 inch screen. It is a better display experience as compared to the smaller 5.1 inch screen of the S6. After attaching the head straps to the specific slots on the Gear Vr, attaching the Note 5 to the display slot will take some time getting used to. But once you know the trick, it will be a breeze. Just remember to unlock the phone before inserting it into the Gear VR dock.



ALL THE INTERESTING APPS

Even before putting the phone into the Gear VR, I was wondering where I could download all the apps. I went into google store on my way home and I couldn't see an Oculus App Store. But as soon as you dock the phone into the Gear VR, a voice command instructs you to remove your phone and continue with Oculus Store App setup. So setup I did and download some apps I did too.



I was frantically looking for the Netflix app but couldn't find it. And I found out the hard way that the Oculus Store app is actually Geo-Restricted. There is a workaround however. To access more apps and games, you need to install a vpn client such as VYPRVpn (the best VPN yet), Hola or Tunnel Bear. Once you connect to a US server from the client, power up the Oculus App and you can see some difference. Netflix shows up too! Yay! As you browse through the app, you can see the list of paid and free apps just like the Google Play Store.

THE VIRTUAL REALITY EXPERIENCE



I have to say that I went "Woah" more times that I remember. The first app I tried was the Oculus 360 Photos. In a matter of seconds, I was in Paris visiting the Louvre. As I looked around the art gallery, I was half convinced that I was actually physically there. My view was literally 360 deg. I could see what is in front of me, to my sides and even when i turned around. I looked up and I was staring at the ceiling, THE FRIGGIN LOUVRE CEILING!

I tried theBlu Vr next and it is appeared to be one of those marine life documentaries. This app took me on a journey into the deep ocean and had me swimming with manta rays, blue whales, schools of fishes, dolphins and of course, sharks. The shark bits got me jumped slightly coz it suddenly swam and appeared on my right blind spot.

Netflix was a joy. The app had me sat on this virtual couch, with a coffee table in front of me, and what probably is a 60 inch tv screen that says "Netflix" on it. And as soon as I play a video, the lights in my virtual living room dimmed, making the viewing experience all the more enjoyable.

I have had the pleasure of trying on the games. But as soon as I get a bluetooth gamepad, I will try some. Don't get me wrong coz some games do not require any game pads at all.


To make the experience even better, those who wear specs, take it off. There is a focus slider on the Gear VR that enables even the most myopic of humans, just like me. This is also a good time to get a pair of good sounding quality headphones. Plug it into your phone audio jack and you are good to go. Just don't be a clown of putting on the headphones first before putting on the Gear VR. You have been warned. Also, clean the lenses of the Gear frequently to get the clearest view. Please don't wear the Gear VR when you are perspiring. You don't want to gather bacteria on those comfy foams found on the Gear VR.


MY CONCLUSION

I am truly impressed with the technology. Because the Virtual Reality experience actually runs from a phone, your movements to turn at any directions, will not be limited as no cables are tethered to the Gear VR. This allows freedom of body movements. All you need is a swivel chair and you are free to explore the Virtual World immersively.

The potential to redefine education might be in Virtual Reality. There is so much you do can do to have more interactive learning. If this is the main tool for studying in school, I would never ever find school a hassle.

The  Gear Vr headset is a damn brilliant accessory to your current Gen Samsung Phones (S6, S6 Edge & Note 5). Just like the tagline from Samsung, it really does unlock the hidden power in your phone. If you do have the phones right now, this piece of gadget is a no brainer to get.

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