Oculus adds Chromecast support to Samsung Gear VR to increase engagement

Premium headsets like the Oculus Rift, HTC Vive or Sony PlayStation VR, not to mention standalone products in development from HTC and Lenovo with Google’s all-important support, are probably the future of the fledgling virtual reality market.

But for the time being, it’s low-cost shells like the Samsung Gear VR that people are actually buying (or getting for free) as a casual introduction in this fascinating new universe.

As such, it’s definitely nice to see Facebook-owned industry pioneer and Gear VR software skipper Oculus fully committed to continuously improving the entry-level gadget’s user experience.

The latest feature exclusively enabled on the flagship Galaxy phone-dependent headset is perhaps not a game changer or as big a deal as, say, real-time eye tracking. But it’s a nifty new  “social element” of the ever-evolving ecosystem, helping people around you understand what’s happening on your head.

You just need the latest version of the Oculus mobile app and Android (7.0 Nougat, not necessarily 7.1), and with a simple tap on the former’s Cast button, all the immersive action will be streamed to your large-screen TV via one of those super-affordable Chromecast dongles.

There’s no way for anyone else to actually join the fun, just watch you as you do your thing, but clearly, the goal is to show holdouts what they’re missing. Ironically, Google’s own Daydream View headset doesn’t work with the search giant’s Chromecast family, though it will soon enough, according to an official announcement made at I/O earlier this month.

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About The Author
Adrian Diaconescu
Adrian has had an insatiable passion for writing since he was in school and found himself writing philosophical essays about the meaning of life and the differences between light and dark beer. Later, he realized this was pretty much his only marketable skill, so he first created a personal blog (in Romanian) and then discovered his true calling, which is writing about all things tech (in English).