THe UMI Box 3 is one of many Google Cardboard based VR Headsets which have cropped up over the last year. They all vary in quality, so how does this relatively inexpensive model compare?
Build quality is fairly good on this; adjustable eye pieces (each side) and distance from screen can be adjusted using a dial on the top as well, which a lot of other headsets lack. The magnetic ring to control actions in apps is on the bottom of the device, which isn’t ideal but at least it has one and you do get used to the placing after a while.
The velcro headband is comfortable and fully adjustable but for my larger head it doesn’t seem to hold all that well and starts to slip off a little after a while unless tightened properly. It’s made from good quality materials., though and has a lot of velcro to be versatile enough for different head sizes.
While there is no adjustable holder for different sized phones, as with a few headsets I’ve tried. it just holds the phone in place with a foam ring, so you need to line it up well. Once it does get lined up it stays in place. I’ve tried an iPhone 6 Plus, an iPhone SE and a generic 5″ Android phone, all of which worked well enough. Larger phones of 6″ do benefit hugely, though, with the larger screen size fully covering the lenses.
Some mention should be made of the slip off cover at the front, which allows for AR as well as VR, allowing you to use your phone’s camera for Augmented Reality apps. These are also gaining in popularity and the headset is perfect for those that mix the VR and AR experiences together. This is important as a lot of basic headsets just don’t have this option.
Users would certainly benefit from buying a separate Bluetooth controller for this as Apps are slowly gaining pace on Android and iOS with more complicated set-ups. It’s not quite a match for the Samsung VR but it’s pretty close and has the benefit of accepting a wealth of different phones.
I’d certainly recommend this headset over a carboard one or many of the others on the market as it has all the functions you need to get into VR and it’s really well made.
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