Early experiences with the Oculus Go
I received my Oculus Go on May 8th and as a device I’m impressed and it’s going to be great as the experience is very much a step up from the Samsung Gear VR.
For those unaware of the Go it's a totally standalone device that doesn't need a phone or a cable to the PC. You just need your phone to set the device up and then away you go.
Easier to use than both the Samsung Gear VR and Cardboard as its all integrated and the viewing experience is to my eyes superior with less purple fringing around text and objects.
The controller is an excellent little device that can be configured to left and right handed use and makes 'typing' on the virtual keyboard, app selection and navigation in the model a cinch
However as things are at the moment you can’t get your own spaces into the Matterport VR app. I thought it might be possible via inputting the URL of a collection into the browser but that doesn’t work as mentioned elsewhere by Keith Schaffer as something blocks it and a hack I thought might be an option of transferring files into the Android stack isn’t possible as not enough of the file structure is made available by Oculus. I thought it might be available as you can see the model folders in the file structure of the Matterport Samsung app.
The only way to display your own spaces is to navigate to a space hosted on your own website, or the Matterport Gallery via the browser and then selecting the Cardboard app option when going into VR. A little more 'clunky' than you'd wish but once in there it moves well and the viewing experience is very good in my opinion.
As an option for showing the VR capabilities of Matterport models and not having to mess around dropping your phone into the cardboard or even the Gear VR the Go is an excellent option.
Using the browser does create a list in the browser history which is OK for VR tours if the user as a bit more tech minded but not as intuitive as a simple collection in the Matterport App.
I'd suggest you visit several models prior to any demo and have them sitting in the browser history so you can easily access them and hand over to the client
One neat thing is the fact that the straps can be moved out of the way on the Go so it make casual 'handing around' easy but with the option to 'strap on' and fully immerse yourself still there easily.
Someone asked on the Facebook group asked elsewhere how you would demo this to a client. I'd suggest that if they're only hosting one tour and it's going to be embedded in their site then I don't see an issue, they can use a Go. The other option of using the Samsung Gear is still available while not as straightforward as the Go it does still give an excellent experience and the Matterport VR app is fully integrated and it is very impressive when you load up a Collection, especially if you've titled it.
When Matterport bring that level of integration to the Go, I'm not exaggerating when I say it WILL be a game changer for Matterport VR tours.
So while not as integrated as we'd like at the moment the positive is that this is an improvement on ANY other 'cheap' VR option and as such is future proofing any investment by a client in the technology.
I would hope that Matterport won't have too many issues getting their app to work as well as the Samsung Gear version assuming they are allowed programming access to the required systems by the Oculus SDK.
Obviously there isn't the option of using a camera to read a QR code but either opening up the opportunity to type in an address into the app or fixing the link between the browser and perhaps even getting a link in there would be great.
(I'm available to test any Beta builds of a VR app if required I have over 25 years of VR experience and Alpha/Beta testing of software/hardware in the mobile and games industry space )