Running in VR

This morning I went for a run in various places around the world, including a fjord in Iceland, a tropical waterfall, a canal in Venice, a bobsled run in Jamaica, a beach in Hawaii and various other exotic locales.

I was actually at home on my treadmill, my GearVR over my eyes, headphones over my ears, and one hand resting firmly on the treadmill rail (a necessary concession to reality).

It was great fun, and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Enough so that I think I’m going to make VR a regular part of my exercise regime.

The fact that the GearVR / Galaxy Note 4 system is high enough resolution, that it has no wires trailing, that it responds without noticeable lag when you turn your head, all combine to make a compelling experience.

Sure it could be better: I need higher quality noise canceling headphones, the contrast is nothing to write home about, and of course higher pixel density would certainly be welcome. But that will be coming soon enough.

For now, this is a huge leap forward from anything I could have imagined I’d be experiencing at home on my treadmill.

There is one wrinkle though. After about twenty minutes, the Galaxy Note 4 heats up from the constant activity and I get a warning on my screen that I need to stop and let it cool off.

Fortunately, that’s one of the advantages of being at home. I just pop my phone in the freezer, and in about two minutes I’m ready to go back to that beach in Hawaii.

4 Responses to “Running in VR”

  1. J. Peterson says:

    That sort of cook/freeze cycle is the sort of thing hardware engineers use as an accelerated aging test. You might want to spring for the extended warranty on that Note 4 : )

    Perhaps the computational demands on our phones have hit the thermal limits of their CPUs. “Huh? Could you speak up? My phone’s fan just kicked on…”

  2. admin says:

    Not sure I really want to keep it in there long enough for it to freeze. Although if you’re interested in phone freezing, you might find this amusing:

    On the other hand, the phone will probably be out of date within a year anyway, when some higher resolution model comes along.

  3. Which app/content were you using for this? Just watching the videos that come with it? Or is there an app that I’m not aware of. Ha, I can’t imagine Samsung or Oculus allowing a running game that where you are totally blinded while doing it!

  4. admin says:

    I was mostly watching MilkVR, the streaming 360 degree video service that comes with the GearVR.

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