iPhones are now optimised for DIY Google Cardboard VR headset

17 May 2016

iPhone users can now try their hand at some of the low-grade virtual reality (VR) experiences available on YouTube as Google has updated the iOS app to allow viewing using Google Cardboard.

Since launching in the summer of 2014, the Google Cardboard DIY VR headset has proven a quiet hit with fans who prefer the idea of making their own set of immersive goggles for around $20, rather than shelling out hundreds for a more professional device.

Any video can be viewed in VR

Given it is a Google product, the company’s video-sharing platform, YouTube, was an obvious choice to hold a series of videos that have been shot with a 360-degree field of view to allow Google Cardboard users to see an awful lot more than they would in a standard video.

Now, it’s been quietly revealed to iOS users that an app update for YouTube will allow these 360-degree videos to be viewed on iPhones, too.

Also, the Google Cardboard functionality of the YouTube app will allow any video to be split into two for each eye of the Google Cardboard wearer to at least offer a more immersive viewing of that cat jumping in and out of a box.

Google Cardboard Menu

Not just for Google Cardboard

For iOS users unfamiliar with how you can activate Google Cardboard on iPhones, a small drop-down menu is available in the top right-hand corner of the screen and, once selected, offers a button to select Cardboard mode.

It’s then just a case of taking your newly-built Google Cardboard – or newly bought online one if you’re not the creative type – and placing the phone into it.

Of course, there are other devices that will work just as fine, such as the iCandy VR goggles we reviewed last year, which offer a plastic, but impressive, alternative.

Google Cardboard iOS

Google Cardboard image via Shutterstock

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic