The Daydream View Google test: a daydream

preamble: we used for this test the Google Pixel XL and the helmet Daydream View. You may be wondering why? The platform Daydream not being in its infancy, it was impossible to perform it with another phone.

Daydream: characteristics of the VR of Google platform

there are few compatible with Daydream platform smartphones. At present, it is essentially Google (Pixel and Pixel XL) smartphones. The American giant imposes strict conditions on manufacturers for certification Daydream. Below are the essential elements in order to use the VR on Android.

  • At least two physical cores to the processor

  • screen diagonal between 4.7 and 6 inches

  • Definition of Full-HD screen at a minimum (recommended Quad-HD)

  • frequency of 60 Hertz in VR

  • latency of the screen (gray to gray and black to white) less of 3 milliseconds

  • screens must be compatible with a mode in which the pixels deliver in 5 milliseconds maximum light

  • compatibility with OpenGL 3.2 and Vulkan

  • a mode allowing consistent performance

  • 4.2 Bluetooth and Bluetooth THE Data Length Extension

is not just a helmet, there is also a remote control that is useful in certain circumstances, more on that later. Daydream View is the first device VR to Daydream and, more generally, the first real Google virtual reality device.

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the Daydream View helmet includes a remote control. © AndroidPIT

this is a device of gray color. Within hours, he had a chemical smell, which subsequently disappeared. The front, in the valve there is a location to place the smartphone. You can put the remote control when you carry the camera.

No keys orders or power outlet on this helmet, is also not necessary. As for the remote, it is connected to the Pixel XL by Bluetooth and, if you can charge the battery using the C Type USB port.

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it is gone! © AndroidPIT

Let’s go, he has to place the smartphone and we’re ready for the big trip!

View daydream: configuration and discovery

must first install on your smartphone you need (which must be compatible with Daydream, remember). Download Daydream and Google VR services. During our test, an identification was necessary after the start of the application of Daydream. When Daydream is available at all, this will be more useful. Then he had to update the software on the remote control. This done, we can move on to serious things: a tutorial familiarizes you with the use of Daydream. You learn to calibrate the remote and navigate through the explanations. A long press on the Home button on the remote control center the view, what is needed in the middle.

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the View with the Pixel XL Daydream. © AndroidPIT

the remote control is virtually incorporated on some games in the field of vision. The UI shows essentially spaces, landscapes or even caves, in which menus are displayed.

View daydream: optics and field of vision

it is especially in the main menu, the field of view posed problem. You don’t see that with an angle of about 90 degrees, which isn’t really an extraordinary result because the human eye has a field of view of approximately 180 degrees. In the menus, we have the impression of being behind a window. That said, in the games, this problem is barely visible because you a lot in movement. The virtual environment made a really good impression.

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the graphic aspect is not really convincing. © AndroidPIT

the virtual graphics are more problematic. Daydream View has a problem: the matrix of the subpixels can be seen, but as a comparison we get a better result than what we can find on the Samsung VR Gear. What does this mean? In other words, you see pixels. This means that you can’t really see a colored surface, instead you find a color black-colored matrix that certainly represents an environment but the latter lack of detail. You can easily see this problem since white rasterized areas are visible on the screen.

View daydream: usability

Daydream View weighs 220 grams. Only an elastic band allows to connect the helmet to the head. During our short test, I have not noticed any problem with elastic, but it is so long to adjust it to keep the helmet.

Depending on the shape of the face, it is possible that the light goes through below or by behind. In addition, sometimes dust appear on the screen. Clearly, you should clean the screen before you start playing.

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here is the complete equipment: helmet, the remote control and the Pixel XL. © AndroidPIT

those who wear glasses can use Daydream View without worrying, but only to the extent where their glasses are not too big. My colleague Eric wearing glasses and could easily test the helmet, there is no night image quality or user experience. He also saw the problems explained above pixels.

View daydream: applications and games

the section dedicated to games and content to Daydream is at present rather thin, only a few games and applications are available. VR sessions, Pixel XL goes into special mode with optimized performance. This is heated the smartphone but the CPU frequency is not changed to see slowdowns. Instead, after a half hour of game, and despite the warming of the device, it is as good as at the beginning of the game.

Content of applications and videos

YouTube, Google pictures and some other applications are available in the Daydream of the Play Store category. This last can be managed from the application of Daydream, as in normal mode than VR.

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Daydream Home. © ANDROIDPIT

YouTube provides access to the videos, 360 °. For example, you can observe a shark hunt… The RV shows in a size close to the actual size, guaranteed thrills!

Google Photos is also available allowing you to access the photos in 360 °. However, it is not all the pictures: I have on my account at least a hundred of photos 360 ° but Daydream in showed me that 7. Too bad there are no options to scroll from one photo to another.

Google Play movies is also of the part. You can see your movies or series like in a cinema outdoors. However, problems can be reported: the field of vision is a bit limited and for eyes accustomed to Blue-Ray image quality may disappoint. With earphones and headphones Google View, you have somehow your mobile cinema. That’s what you get using Google Play movies.

Daydream games

Daydream is created mainly for games, no doubt. Several of them are already available and show what Daydream is capable.

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the remote assistance for all types of games. © AndroidPIT

one of the first games available is Mekorama VR . You can discover new levels. The control is done with l ‘ aid of the remote control (“controller”, in English), which is a kind of wand in the game. You can thus turn the elements or drive the robot. Mekorama VR is fun but costs a hefty $ 4.29 euros.

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Mekorama VR. © Screenshot: ANDROIDPIT

Mekorama VR Install on Google Play

another game: Hunters Gate . With your character, you have to save a world overrun by demons. Various elements allow him to improve and increase the damage it can do. The decorations are gloomy and impressive, control is done using the remote control and is very simple. The game costs 6,49 Euro.

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hunters Gate. © Screenshot: ANDROIDPIT

Hunters Gate Install on Google Play

games Cardboard

Daydream games are in a classic app drawer and can be started easily. What, then, of applapplications that had been optimized for Cardboard? They also work, but there are a few limitations. For example, with swigging VR , we can see some differences. Firstly, she does not appear in the launcher of Daydream. In order to start the game, I had to start to Daydream, then stop it, then launch Lamper VR. Then, the tutorial began. Swigging VR subsequently tried I type something, which is possible only by using the touchscreen phone since the remote control is not recognized.

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the View Daydream is not cardboard. © AndroidPIT

to summarize, overall the Cardboard games work but are difficult to use. We’ll see if solutions will be created to address this problem.

View daydream: battery –

when using VR, the Pixel heats quickly. Is the battery consumption also high? Yes, the battery level drops quickly, the battery lasts between 2 and 3 hours. Of course, in VR mode performance is improved and the unit heats a lot, but two hours is still little.

View daydream: release date and price

Daydream View is not available for purchase in France. You can find it on the Google Store to several countries, including the Germany (where the Pixel is marketed). As for the price, it is 69 euros.

View daydream: verdict

it is difficult to get an opinion on Daydream and Daydream View. The platform is still young and there is little content available. Daydream doing well, it is to support several manufacturers but there are only few alternatives. In terms of smartphone, it will take a while to find a compatible.

Overall, Google has taken the right decisions. Special mode for performance and the proper use of the screen allow a quality viewing experience. Unfortunately, we regret the lack of compatibility with Cardboard applications.

overall, Google has taken the right decisions

in the details, we can find several weaknesses. The space in front of the eyes is not sufficiently protected from light, which can be disturbing. In addition, the field of vision problem also. Pixel density should be improved, but it’s more a problem at the level of the smartphone to Daydream View level.

Daydream is not revolution, at least at the present time. The platform is in its infancy and can thus be significantly improved. Those who like the VR can use this headset Daydream View to discover the world of the VR but it will still take several generations for the VR has reached a real quality level and so that the user experience is really satisfactory. 

he will have to wait several generations for the VR has reached a real level of quality

regarding me, a VR session takes up to half an hour. In the past, I have to come back in the real because otherwise I don’t feel very well, I have an unpleasant feeling in the eyes and throughout the body.

What do you think of the View Daydream? Do you intend to wait for one of the smartphones from 2017, or do you want to use Daydream View with the Pixel?

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