Google Announces Cardboard SDK for iOS, 'VR View' Feature for Apps and Websites

Google today announced the launch of a Cardboard SDK for iOS developers, allowing them to more easily create native iPhone apps and experiences that will work with the Google Cardboard virtual reality viewer. The Cardboard SDK for iOS includes all of the features that are already available in the Android Cardboard SDK.

For those unfamiliar with Google Cardboard, it is a low-cost viewer designed to work with a range of smartphones from Android devices to iOS devices. The iPhone or other smartphone fits into the front of a viewer made from cardboard or another material, bringing virtual and augmented reality experiences to the user through apps.

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Google is also debuting VR view, a feature that allows immersive content to be embedded into apps and websites. VR views transform 360 degree VR images or video into an interactive experience that can be viewed on a desktop computer (an example is available in Google's blog post) or with a phone attached to a Cardboard viewer.
Travel apps may include turtle photos, but they're nothing like diving into the open ocean. Real estate websites may include descriptions of the dining room, but it's nothing like actually touring the home. For developers, having immersive elements in their apps and websites can be the difference between meh and magical. That's why we're introducing VR view--a quick and easy way to embed immersive content on Android, iOS and the web.
The Cardboard SDK for iOS and the tools for creating VR views are available starting today.



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17 weeks ago
Pretty slick - I literally just ordered a $10 Cardboard viewer to give it a shot on my 5c. Exciting times!
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Dumb but people will buy it.


Not sure why people buying this would be dumb - a $10 viewer seems like an excellent way to get one's VR feet wet without paying $99 for the Samsung viewer or $600+ for an Oculus Rift. It may not be an ideal VR experience, but it's something cheap to give an impression of what's possible with the tech while we wait for prices to go down for dedicated units.
Rating: 5 Votes
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17 weeks ago

Thanks for explaining that. Initially, I thought they were messing with us.


I know, the cardboard construction make it seem like some kind of fake product, but for these simple phone based VR system, you just need a holder than blocks out some light and a couple of lenses to converge on the images on the phone display. Plus, current phones have such ridiculous processing power, gyros, motions sensors, stereo output, 98% of the "headset" is in the phone.

Even the Samsung VR headset that look like a "real" product is just a plastic visor, and it has some control interfaces to you can interact with the phone/device from external headset mounted buttons - but it's mostly nothing :D (It's only $99).

My little G was using the cardboard with this app:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/dive-city-rollercoaster/id771293168?mt=8

and with headphones plugged into the phone, it was immersive enough that she rolled back and fell off the sofa (she was OK :D )
Rating: 2 Votes
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17 weeks ago
It's so cheap why not try. Who cares if it sucks and you're out $10-$20
Rating: 2 Votes
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17 weeks ago
I got one of these simple View Master goggles, which is essentially a plastic Google Cardboard v1.

View-Master Virtual Reality Starter Pack https://www.amazon.com/dp/B011EG5HJ2/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_awd_k.E.wb0CdoeJ5DPX

I had never used one of these and honestly, it kind of blew my mind how cool it is. There are tons of free apps and it's really fun.

But I hear that Google Cardboard v2 is better. Does anyone have any recommendations for a v2 product that I can buy that is a little better than he cardboard itself? Maybe something that has a head strap, so you don't have to always hold it up?
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