Virtual reality (VR) technology has existed and been sold to consumers since the early 90s but it wasn’t until about 2010 that we really saw a boom in companies that were making headsets.
Brands like Oculus, HTC, and Sony have been steadily perfecting the technology for the last decade to the point that now we’re seeing big-name franchises such as Batman: Arkham, Fallout, and Half-Life throw their hats to VR, creating (by all accounts) fantastic experiences.
The only issue with VR technology is that it can be expensive. Not only that, in order to get the full experience you need the space to move around in – and sometimes that kind of space is a luxury people can’t afford.
So what about those of us who can’t really afford the latest Oculus Rift, or can’t spare the space to move our arms wildly whilst fighting virtual reality aliens? Well luckily companies like EVO have you covered – more or less.
Before you commit to a full virtual reality headset with controllers and bells and whistles, you might want to try a smaller, smartphone VR headset. These work by making your phone the screen at the front of the headset, and whilst they may not be as powerful as other devices, they’re significantly cheaper, and a great place to start.
There are several factors that a VR headset needs to have prioritized in order to make it a decent sell. These can include the material used, the sizing, the appearance, and the features.
Some headsets like the Google Cardboard put a lot less consideration into the appearance and materials of the headset, opting to cater the device much more for children and people for whom an actual headset isn’t an option.
However, EVO is definitely trying to emulate the look and feel of a higher-end headset, so with that in mind, let’s go through how the EVO VR headset holds up.
The EVO Virtual Reality Headset is primarily made of plastic. This makes the device lightweight, both to travel with and whilst wearing, which means that it won’t feel as though you’re damaging your neck.
This does however come with its fair share of downsides, however. For one thing, the lightweight plastic feels quite cheap – which it is, but you don’t always want to be able to tell. It also affects the durability of the headset: moving too vigorously, or a couple of accidental drops, and you risk doing some damage to the structure.
Overall the EVO VR could have done with being made of a slightly thicker material but is lightweight enough to be used for longer stretches of time than a heavier model.
This headset is able to accommodate android and IOS phones of most sizes, claiming to be compatible with all smartphones. However, as a few reviewers have pointed out, if you happen to have a bulky cover on your phone it may not fit well in the available slot.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that it won’t work, you may just need to take the cover off if you can for the time that you’re using the headset.
As for the size of the headset itself, its dimensions look like this: 7.87 x 4.33 x 5.12 inches. The headset is somewhat compact compared to others, making it much easier to put away and store once you’re finished with it.
It also means that it doesn’t pull too much on your neck and leave it sore – this combined with the lightweight nature of the headset makes it comfortable to wear for long periods of time.
One Amazon reviewer noted that the strap that goes around your head is comfy and particularly robust – it’s easy to adjust to whatever hat size you have, and can even accommodate very large heads.
The EVO headset is compact and comfortable, on big heads and small, which is a great benefit if you want to show off the tech to many different people.
This headset is only available in a sleek, matte black. The compartment for the smartphone is compact, and you don’t lose any of that even when the phone is in position, as the compartment is fully enclosed.
There are vents to allow a decent amount of airflow so that the phone doesn’t overheat when you’re using it. All of these aspects come together to make a smart, sensible-looking headset.
However there’s nothing that stands out as particularly special with this headset, and it, unfortunately, looks as cheap as it feels – this doesn’t necessarily have to be a downfall, but it is definitely worth keeping in mind.
The EVO Virtual Reality headset doesn’t come with any real feature. Some headsets come with a controller that helps you move around and navigate the interface.
Unfortunately, the EVO does not have a controller, and so you either have to download games and apps that don’t require a controller to navigate. Alternatively, you can buy a Bluetooth controller that will connect to your phones and work with that – any of them should be compatible.
It’s also worth noting that this headset does not have a charging port or heat sink. What this means is that without a charging port, you cannot plug in your phone whilst using the headset, meaning that it could die during your playtime.
And due to the often high intensity of virtual reality games or apps, it’s very easy for your phone to become overheated. A heatsink would accommodate this and help regulate the temperature. Without it you could damage your phone due to overheating, which could cause it to turn off randomly, or just be very difficult to hold.
The best way to explain the EVO VR Headset is to say that you get what you pay for. This is an inexpensive piece of kit, and because of that, you don’t get anything fancy.
What do you get is a functional headset that can be used for some fun experiences right from your smartphone. Whilst not a high-tech or elite gaming experience like some other VR headsets might offer you, this is a great, reasonably priced model that does exactly what it says that it should – just nothing more.
Smartphone VR Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Watch Films In VR On A Smartphone?
Yes! It requires a little bit of fiddling, but yes you are able to watch a film in VRusing a smartphone headset.
You will need to download a VR film streaming app onto your phone – some good ones include CINEVR, Plex VR, and Bigscreen VR. Alternatively you can download the movie directly onto your PC, then stream it to your phone via a mirrored server.
There are plenty of great movies you can watch in either 2D, 3D, or 360° viewing, depending on which method you choose to stream from.
Who Can Use VR Headsets?
Technically anyone, but that doesn’t mean it’s for everyone. Because of the nature of VR, those with visual impairments might find it more difficult or even impossible to calibrate the lenses inside the headset to allow for crisp and clear visuals.
As well as this, those who are susceptible to migraines or people with epilepsy are recommended to avoid using headsets, as they can trigger very negative side effects, especially if you’re intending to use them for long periods of time.
You should also avoid letting young children from using them for an extended duration as it can have an effect on their development, both visually and cognitively.
Other than that, most people should be able to comfortably enjoy and explore the world of virtual reality. In the past, the headsets could leave people feeling particularly motion-sick, however, the technology has improved dramatically, allowing for a much smoother experience.