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  • XGVR Now a Reality

    Early this year, we launched a Kickstarter campaign to bring you a Virtual Reality headset that will become a gateway to discovery and adventure. Well, the long wait is over – I AM Cardboard's XGVR is now officially shipping!

    This sleek, awesome gadget fits smartphones like iPhones 5, 6 and 6 Plus, and most Android phones up to Nexus 6-sized units. It's also packed with discreet features that aim to make VR as comfortable as we can make it.

    XGVR's exciting features

    With your XGVR, you get multi-coated lenses that are anti-reflection, anti-fingerprint, and totally durable.

    You get a foam pad that rests snugly on your forehead and nose. For hygienic purposes, the foam pad is designed to be replaced.

    You get an ergonomic design that is high on functionality and scores points for its sleek, good looks.

    You get an easy-to-use phone attachment that is secure and stable.

    You get a bluetooth clicker that solves all magnet compatibility problems.

    Best of all, you get a 100-degree field of view that makes VR a truly stimulating, exciting experience.

    What can we say? Accessible virtual reality has never looked this good. Thanks for being part of this awesome VR ride!

  • Daddy Apps: VR Apps to Introduce to Your Dad

    For every type of dad, there’s an app that’s a perfect match. This Father’s Day, we take a look at the different types of dads and which VR apps you can introduce them to.

    The Geeky Dad (AKA The Pal-Dad)

    He’s the type of dad that everyone wants. He’s got more fandoms and collectible memorabilia than anyone else—and you’re crossing your fingers that you’ll get to own all of them someday.

    The app: VR Cinema for Cardboard (Mobius Networks)

    With this, he can watch all the best movies on a VR display—a fresh way to see old favorites. It’s the perfect way to unwind after a hard day of adulting.

    The Handy Daddy (Sometimes Known as the Mom-Dad or Helicopter Daddy)

    This dad’s a veritable Superman around the house. He’s chore-happy and can fix anything from the family car right down to the plumbing!

    The App: The Mercedes VR for Cardboard (Visualise)

    Mercedes Benz VR

    Reward your Superdad with a virtual ride on one of the most prominent luxury cars in the world. With this app, he can enjoy various Mercedes Benz models such as the new AMG GT.

    The Business Dad

    No-nonsense. He’s all work and no play. But that doesn’t mean you can’t pique his interest and turn him on to VR.

    The app: The VR Banking app (Fiducia IT AG)

    Tickle his fancy with this helpful app where he can handle the family finances whenever, wherever. There's a catch though. It’s in German—which presents a problem for the rest of the non-German speaking populace. Still, it is a great idea that should be picked up by app manufacturers.

    The Artsy Dad

    Life is art and this type of dad is fine-tuned to it.

    The App: VR Gallery (Holumino Ltd.)

    A great app for dads who happen to love the fine art of capturing perfect images. With the VR Gallery, he can upload his own photos (panoramic or spherical) and enjoy them afterwards on his headset in an immersive way.

    Most people find it difficult to turn their parents on to techie stuff. But with these uber cool VR apps, you won’t need to exert that much effort. Get your dad out of the Stone Age and into the Digital one. It’s a great Father’s Day gift for the man of the house.

  • Around the World the Virtual Way

    Some people travel to get away from it all, while others do it to discover something new. Whatever one’s reason may be, traveling is definitely a worthwhile experience.

    While there may never be a substitute for experiencing the wonders of far-off places in real life, a few Google Cardboard apps let you see and experience these places virtually. And who knows? You they may inspire you enough to want to visit the real place.

    Let’s have a look at some of the top VR travel apps that you can check out.

    Tokyo VR Cardboard (Candlify Technologies)

    Screen Shot 2015-06-16 at 5.29.35 PM

    All you need is a VR headset and to see what it’s like to walk through the streets of Tokyo. With 67 different locations to choose from, you can get to know the bustling city as intimately as possible without needing an English-Japanese dictionary.

    Being one of the more popular tourist destinations, there are also lots of other (non-VR) apps that can help you out should you decide to visit the Land of the Rising Sun such as Tokyo City Guide, Tokyo Offline Map Guide Hotels, and Metro Tokyo Subway to name a few.

    London VR (Rewind)

    Screen Shot 2015-06-16 at 5.29.17 PM

    Get ready to explore the Tower of London, London Eye, HMS Belfast, and many more of the sights of merry-old London- in full-360 degrees. Unlike other VR apps with computer-generated graphics, London VR offers you a view of the real thing.

    UAE VR (Telecommunications Regulatory Authority)

    Screen Shot 2015-06-16 at 5.28.59 PM

    The United Arab Emirates is where Middle-Eastern heritage meets the modernity of the Western world. A hotspot for tourist over the past decades, The UAE continues to add tourist attraction after tourist attraction with time—and now you can get to see them via your Google Cardboard viewer.

    A nifty feature of this app is that it’s available in both English and Arabic.

    Polar Sea (Wemersive LTD)

    Screen Shot 2015-06-16 at 5.28.37 PM

    Why limit your virtual travel to places you can reach via airline when an app can put place any location on the globe within your reach? Chill out on an icy cool escapade. Polar Sea lets users delve into the icy realms of the Arctic’s Northern Passage. While loading times may be an issue, the sheer brilliance of the polar region—captured in 360 degree cameras—should be enough to keep your head cool.

    Google Street View (Google)

    Screen Shot 2015-06-16 at 5.32.18 PM

    Those with no particular destination in mind – or too many destinations in mind – can go exploring using the VR function of Google Street View. Google Street View provides a host of possibilities. It can put you right in the middle of the streets of a number of cities the world over. To walk a city’s streets, after all, is to know the city.

    “Not all those who wander are lost”
    -JJRR Tolkien

    And with these VR apps, you need not lose your way as you can travel as far and wide as your Google Cardboard can take you.

  • VR Music Apps that are as Real as They can Get

    Attending a concert is one of the greatest experiences a music fan could have. Seeing their favorite band or artist perform live can make any music fan dance and sing along.

    Unfortunately, we can’t always head out to watch the musicians we love.

    Here’s where virtual reality steps in. VR has the potential to open up a different type of concert experience. If you can’t catch a live performance in person, experiencing the concert through VR would be the next best thing. With the apps listed below, you can have a an immersive concert experience... without the hassle of getting stuck in the middle of a sweaty crowd.

    Jack White Third-D (Jaunt Inc.)

    Why settle for experiencing Jack White's music the old-fashioned way, when you can immerse yourself in his music via a full-blown VR app? In his VR concert, the genius behind the White Stripes and The Raconteurs serves up rip-roaring renditions of “Freedom at 21” and “Ball and Biscuit” direct from Boston's Bleacher Theater, as well as “Dead Leaves and the Dirty Ground” from the famed Red Rocks Amphitheater in Colorado.

    Paul McCartney (Jaunt Inc.) 

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    No more lonely nights for you as Sir Paul McCartney comes to virtual life whenever, wherever you want. By using your Google Cardboard kit, you get to experience a romp-stomping rendition of his classic tune Live and Let Die. With its full 360-degree view, the app puts you right in the thick of the action..

    Rave Simulator VR (Gilberto Avalos)

    Screen Shot 2015-06-09 at 6.52.40 PM

    If you prefer electronic beats, and booty-thumping bass, Rave Simulator may just be the right one for you to groove to. While it doesn’t offer the type of concert experience the aforementioned apps do, Rave Simulator definitely lives up to its name, albeit with a strange twist.  With the app fired up, you'll enter a VR rave... complete with skeletal ravers. Although the experience can get repetitive quite fast (it would be a lot cooler if you could choose the music to party to), the app is good enough for some trippy fun .

    These are a few of the virtual reality music apps available right now that genuine lovers of music would enjoy.

  • Meet Our V2 Cardboard Kit

    When Google introduced Google Cardboard in 2014, the kit was a marvel of simplicity. While most VR headset makers were going the hi-tech route, Google decided to head the opposite direction. It created a headset that was accessible - you can’t get more basic than cardboard - and an app ecosystem that works on your Android smartphone. The design of that first kit was open-sourced, and allowed kit makers such as I AM Cardboard to tweak and adapt the design. (It even gave us the chance to develop the XG VR headset)

    During last week’s I/O conference, Google unveiled the new version of their cardboard kit. As good as the first version was, the V2 kit makes some pretty awesome improvements over the former. At first glance, the kit looks similar, but changes were made to give users an even better overall experience. Here are some of the changes:

    Easy three-step assembly

    With the V1 kit, the user had to open the cardboard folder and assemble the kit from its contents. While assembly of I AM Cardboard’s V1 kits was simple enough, our new version makes it even easier.

    Remove the kit from its sleeve, unfold the flaps, insert you phone, and you're good to go

    steps 2
    Easier to transport

    One of the big improvements the V2 kit introduces is the ability to refold and return it to its sleeve. The kit uses velcro instead of double-sided tape. Once you’re done using it, fold it up and return it to its protective sleeve. You end up with a nice, compact block that won’t snag or tear easily.

    IMG_0155

    Larger lenses

    The V2 kit has asymmetrical 37mm biconvex lenses with 50mm focal length - larger than the lenses in similarly-sized V1 counterparts .

    lens

    Better compatibility

    Phones with screen sizes up to 6 inches can fit in the kit - even iOS smartphones!

    mobile

    New input method

    The most radical design change is the departure from the old magnetic input method. The new kits feature a conductive button that closes the circuit between your finger and the touchscreen.

    conductive tab

    I AM Cardboard's V2 kits are now available at our shop. Grab a unit and go on a VR adventure!

  • Want to Make VR a Truly Personal Experience?

    Bespoke kits are the way to go!

    I AM Cardboard makes personalized virtual reality kits for business and other brand-oriented purposes. They're great for marketing campaigns or corporate giveaways. They serve as unique birthday and wedding souvenirs. They make for memorable conference freebies and personalized gifts.

    For the creative person, a customized I AM Cardboard kit can become virtually anything: a marriage proposal tool.

    A handy travel guide.

    Orbulus

    A toy that opens up worlds of entertainment and information.

    Lamper VR

    Really, the possibilities are endless.

    Customization options include the classic Cardboard and the EVA materials. Colors come in kraft, white, black, blue, red, and yellow. You can choose between one or two-sided full-color UV printing, or one or two-sided silkscreen printing. One-sided digital CMYK printing is also available.

    The best thing about our bespoke kits (aside from the very reasonable price)? You can order just one unit. Just one. Think about it. Send us an email to cs@imcardboard.com with the email subject: Bespoke kits, and we’ll reply with an order form and template for your design. After we receive your filled-up order form and design, we’ll send send you a quotation based on the customization options and quantity.

  • Cardboard Cousins (5 useful cardboard objects of the past)

    It's basic but it doesn't have to be boring. In the not-so-distant past, a piece of cardboard provided us loads of practicality and entertainment.

    With all the possibilities offered by Google Cardboard, we'd be hard-pressed to see the lowly cardboard as only good for carrying pizza (which isn't a shabby purpose at all!). Let's take a closer look at five of the Cardboard kit's ancestors to know how they were made into handy gadgets and other fun stuff.

    1. Pinhole camera

    Basically, cameras are just closed containers with a small hole that create images based on light. No wonder a small cardboard box made for a nifty pinhole camera for many a crafty kid (and adult!). Building this basic camera from scratch and taking pictures with it is an undeniably fulfilling experience.

    Your Cardboard kit is made from the same humble material and offers the same kind of fulfillment, but with more possibilities. For instance, apps like the 3D Camera for Google Cardboard allow you to capture images in 3D with just a simple tap of the screen.

    2. Binoculars and 3D glasses

    I can see you                                                      Photo: Rob via Flickr, CC BY-ND 2.0

    Homemade paper or cardboard binoculars are typical adventure instruments for kids. All it takes are two cardboard toilet paper tubes, string, markers, and other basic tools. And when it comes to a solar eclipse and 3D films, there's nothing like a piece of flat cardboard and some red and blue cellophane to really help you see the majesty! This particular technology, also known as anaglyph glasses, was really the first to utilize 3D imagery.

    Today, your Cardboard kit and your smartphone are the very tools that enable you to experience virtual reality. The lenses are similar to a binoculars', but the possibilities of virtual reality? Well, let's just say they go beyond viewing solar eclipses and seeing images pop.

    3. Music media dock

    Cardboard boxes have long been seen as temporary solutions for storage, insulation, padding, and protection. Even before someone actually designed a cardboard dock for small gadgets like MP3 players and smartphones, the humble cardboard has been used countless times as makeshift holders for cassette tapes, records, CDs, and other musical media.

    Today, your Cardboard kit enables you to try musical apps like the Paul McCartney and Jack White virtual reality videos, and fully enjoy their music as you would in a concert. We're looking forward to more music-based Cardboard apps very soon!

    4. File box

    At some point in our lives, we've used a cardboard box to store our files. It's a reliable catchall for school papers, instruction manuals, receipts, and other important papers we need to keep track of. Now, with apps like Google Street View, you no longer need bulky paper maps to make your way around places. We're predicting more storage apps that keep our files safe, provide hands-free instructions, help with research, and basically make life hassle-free will be available in the coming months.

    5. Adventure vessel

    As a throwback to a more imaginative, innovative time for kids, flattened pieces of cardboard boxes were often used as sleds, and bigger ones as cars and trucks. Add a few marker drawings to depict windows, doors, and tires, and you're ready to roll! With your Cardboard kit ready and a few select apps like the Volvo Reality and the Roller Coaster VR, you can let your imagination run full throttle with a virtual reality test drive or a heart-stopping ride.

  • Works With Google Cardboard (Of course it does!)

    In June 2014, a piece of folded cardboard was handed out to each participant of the Google I/O conference. Initial bewilderment gave way to excitement as the possibility of accessible virtual reality dawned on every single person holding that piece of cardboard in their hands.

    Fast-forward to today, Google reveals its official assets which certify kits that are compatible with the Google Cardboard application ecosystem. The catch-phrase “Works With Google Cardboard” certifies that your headset is optimized for use with Cardboard apps. Along with this phrase is the Works With Google Cardboard badge that allows users to see at a glance which Cardboard kit-makers have been accepted to, and are fully compatible with the WWGC program.

    Guess who will be sporting both the Works With Google Cardboard catch-phrase and badge from here on out?

    Works With Google Cardboard Works With Google Cardboard

    We will, because we do.

    I AM Cardboard has received official certification from Google in an announcement last Friday. This certification provides users the assurance that their I AM Cardboard and EVA kits will work swimmingly with Cardboard apps and games.

    Just one of the I AM Cardboard products that Works With Google Cardboard! Just one of the I AM Cardboard products that Works With Google Cardboard!

    We're proud to meet Google standards and we will keep working to give you the best VR experience.

  • EVA for evah!

    The coolest Google Cardboard kits aren’t just made of, well, cardboard.

    Like everyone else with a smartphone, we were excited when Google revealed Google Cardboard during the I/O conference in 2014. Even if we weren’t able to make it to the event (sadface), we still had cardboard kits up at our Amazon store within a week. With things taking off, we started thinking about making kits using different materials. Enter EVA foam.

    _MG_8280

    Let there be long science terms

    EVA foam is also known as foam rubber. But us geeks know that EVA stands for “Ethylene Vinyl Acetate.“ Not exactly the catchiest of names. Yeah, we’ll stick with EVA. It’s the copolymer, or combination, of ethylene and vinyl acetate.

    EVA foam is extremely durable, and is commonly used as padding for sporting gear. We doubt any serious athlete would consider our VR kits as sporting gear, but we’re glad to be in great company. Another common use of EVA foam is to make puzzle mats for babies. Needless to say, EVA foam is extremely durable. If it’s strong enough to withstand a rampaging toddler, it should be strong enough to use for VR kits.

    I AM Cardboard’s EVA foam VR kits are a step above our cardboard units in terms of durability. If you’ve experienced cardboard kits and want to upgrade your experience, EVA kits are the next logical step.

    Going custom

    You can use VR kits and technology for a wide range of uses - even personal projects. Take Mike Rios, for example. He used VR to propose to his girlfriend MaggieTo make your own project more memorable, we recommend having custom graphics printed on your headsets. I AM Cardboard provides several printing options at affordable rates (even at small quantities) . Who said custom kits are for big-name brands only?

    To inquire about custom kit options and costs, send us an email at cs@imcardboard.com.

  • App of the Month: Orbulus

    It provides vivid imagery, it has some ambient noise...and it's free. This month's featured app gives you the chance to travel the world and take in the sights in virtual reality.

    Orbulus offers a user-friendly interface so you can view interesting locations with a simple click. The Photo Spheres in the app show a nice array of immersive scenery. Simply pick one, and you will immediately find yourself on  snow-covered mountain, mingling with tourists on an exciting European holiday, or even drinking in art and culture in a museum. There's even a bit of convincing background noise to add to the experience. Think of it as a vacation-slash-staycation where you get to see the sights, yet stay comfy in your favorite chair minus the astronomical costs of traveling!

    Orbulus

    The Orbulus app is one of the most widely-received among early Cardboard users, and with good reason. It aims to give you a real hands-free VR experience via intuitive controls. VRCraftworks wanted to make an app that is true to the “pick up and go” usability, and Orbulus' immersive Photo Spheres can be controlled simply by looking into your Cardboard gear.

    As with the first wave of apps for Cardboard, the team behind Orbulus acknowledges that there are bugs and improvements to be made. For instance, some smartphones cannot accommodate the large textures used in the app. VRCraftworks encourage users who encounter problems with Orbulus to get in touch with them, and try their lite version on for size.

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