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How to Watch Television on Samsung Gear VR Headset

VR_Feature

Price: $99

If you don’t like television, I don’t like you. Sorry, that was a terrible way to start off. I do like you, I just find it hard to believe that you don’t like television. Now we’ve got that out of the way, let’s get started with some of the best ways to watch TV on the Samsung Gear virtual reality headset.

(Disclaimer: We purchased the Samsung Gear VR headset to review. It was tested using an S7 edge, your experience could be different with another device.)

If you want to find out more, we’ve got a roundup of all of the different ways you can watch videos, movies and TV on the VR headset, as well as information about just how well they work.

Watching entertainment is one of the biggest requests in terms of VR content, so let’s get started;

Related: Samsung Gear VR


The Headset

If you’re interested in using VR to catch up with your favourite shows, the headset isn’t as capable as you might like, but it’s still a great piece of kit with a number of options.

Gear VR Specs

It’s cheap and light, and it’s not uncomfortable for the most part. The headset has a reasonably solid range of apps and VR services on offer, and the list only continues to grow.

There’s a speaker port to allow for better sound. It really enhances the experience, although you can use your phone speakers if you don’t have a decent pair to hand.

USB Headset

You’ll have to use apps to watch TV, but they’re easy to download and simple to get working. It’s incredibly intuitive, and it’s easy to set up when you’re first getting started.

If you want to check out our thoughts on the headset, why not check out our product review which discusses it in-depth?

In terms of watching films and TV, we’ve listed some of the best apps and services below.

Lastly, try to remember that the headset is still being refined, and many of the larger streaming companies are doing their best to catch up with the technology.


1. The Browser on the Samsung Gear VR

YouTube is also available from the browser, if you just want to catch up with some clips from the largest video sharing website. Here’s a YouTube clip that will take you through a method to watch 360 degree videos on a Gear VR headset;

It’s likely that there will be more compatibility (and videos to watch) as the service improves, so keep watching this space if you’re interested.


2. Facebook on the Samsung Gear VR

FB

Thanks to the hard work by Oculus and Samsung you can now connect your Facebook account, which means you can watch 360 degree videos from your feed. (Of course, they’ll have to be 360 degree videos.)

It’s another option that allows you to watch videos, but there aren’t going to be many to choose from if your friends aren’t actively posting content regularly.

If you don’t use Facebook you’re probably not missing out, but at least it’s another option considering the limited methods available at the moment.


Watching Downloaded Content on the Gear VR

Home Theatre VR

If you want to download and watch 3D movies and videos, it is possible, although you will have to get the files on your device first. There are lots of articles and videos that will show you how to do so online, and we’ll include a link below if you’re interested.

(Make sure to be careful when downloading files from the internet to your mobile device.)


Usability of Samsung Gear VR Headset

Usability

One of the best things about films and TV is the ability to get you engrossed in the action. It can be difficult to get used to virtual reality, but it’s worth it in the long run. (Even if I couldn’t handle it for extended periods of time.)

Personally, I prefer using traditional methods to watch films and TV shows, but that doesn’t mean that it won’t be different for you. You can get it working while you’re lying down, which is insanely useful if you just want to relax in bed.

If you want to find out more, check our review of the Gear VR here.

The headset is known to heat up after prolonged use, which is an issue considering it’s so close to your face. I wasn’t affected while using the device, but others have a few complaints to make. We’ve listed some of the most common problems in a separate article.

 

Overall, it’s good enough to experience VR content, and most people should be able to use it for prolonged periods with no issues. It definitely works as advertised, but be aware that it’s not always plain sailing from a user standpoint.


Samsung Gear VR Headset Experience

Gear_Srap

As you might expect, it’s a great experience once you get past any feelings of motion sickness. Although the problems I faced when I first got started were made perfectly clear during the review.

It’s great once you get past these issues, and I would definitely recommend purchasing a headset if you’re interested in trying it out for yourself.

If you’re willing to persevere, you’ll find technology that would have been science fiction just a few decades ago. It’s fully workable and usable, and there aren’t many issues for the most part.

Every app and technique contained in this article offers a slightly different experience, but there’s sure to be one that’s right for you.

As for the future, we’ll discuss this briefly in the next section.


Samsung Gear VR Future & Other Options

The best thing is that a large number of apps are expected in the future. Personally, I’m really looking forward to the dedicated Twitch app, which is rumoured to be ready in the next few months.

Twitch Logo

Vimeo and TiVo are some of the other companies that are said to be launching similar apps soon, and that’s only going to be good of users. (The competition should allow for a wider range of programmes and videos on offer.)

The headset is also going to be refined in future, as they attempt to go for a smaller model that is a little more portable. (That being said, the current model will easily fit in a backpack.

Not_Sunglasses

As you can see, they still have a long way to go, but it’s not ridiculously bulky.

For 360 degree videos, there are a few more options available on the store. The 360 Videos app should cover your needs, while you can download a few others if you want more variety.

There might not be as many apps as you would like, but you have to remember that the technology is being refined as we speak. (The companies listed above are also working on apps for the store.)


Conclusion

Overall, I can’t see the VR headset being very useful in the long term. It’s great for your neck and I had no trouble getting it working, but options are quite limited in terms of watching content at the moment. (As you might expect.)

There’s no point in buying it solely to watch television, as the experience just doesn’t compare to traditional options, but that doesn’t mean that it won’t get better in the near future.

The future does look bright, but you’ll have to wait if you want more than the simplest functions. If you’re desperate to try out VR movies and TV, then the headset is definitely worth buying.

Could VR be the future when it comes to watching the latest television? Do you have any tricks or tips that we haven’t covered? Let us know about your experiences with VR below!

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7 Comments

  1. So, purely out of curiosity AND hope, is there a company or product manufacturer spear-heading a VR headset device solely for the entertainment world?

    Honestly, I look forward to the day that I can put on a set, plug it into or have it wirelessly connect to my DirecTV/Blu-ray/DVD Player, pick up the remote (physically or VR), sit back in my chair and enjoy an immersive experience with my favorite show (The Walking Dead) or movie (Lord of the Rings) in HD (1080p or 4K) and virtual 7.1 Dolby.

    When will we be getting something like that for all of us looking to ditch the clutter and materialistic bravado of the big screen televisions?

    1. The only one I can think of is Samsung, but other than that not really. I look forward to bein able to do that as well, but Maybe the TV manufacturer’s might not be too happy with that. =-)

  2. Only thing wrong with the article is that is not a speaker port. But an adapter to charge your phone while viewing.

    1. The mini port is for power but if you look, the headphone jack is exposed for people without blue tooth headphones.

  3. Hi

    Hope you can help me … i cant seem to find a solution on the internet… i have the oculus samsung white vr like the one above without a remote… and i have a samsung s7. But everytime i put the phone in the headset the docking sound goes of the screen goes black with a little white cross in the corner and then it returns to the home screen with a error reading “unable to use Gear vr. Check mobile device properly inserted in Gear vr. ” But when i go onto youtube and i choose a video it shows me a pair of glasses in the corner and when i tap on it a thing pops up asking me if i want to use gear vr or swith to google cardboard. Then i continue on gear vr and it splits the screen and thwn i clip my phone in the headset and i can watch my video. But evertime i want to change the video i got to unclip my phone ( not unplug it) change the video and clip it back. Its very frustrating since i cant use the oculus app or the mousepad thing on the side to change videos. And btw i downloaded the oculus app by myself since it didnt take me to the instalation when i first inserted my phone because of the error. Hope that covers all of it and hope someone can help me. Thanx

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