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Last year, Mattel rebooted the classic View-Master toy as an affordable virtual reality headset, with support for Google Cardboard apps and compatibility with a wide range of different smartphones. Now, while Apple is allegedly hard at work on its own Virtual Reality ideas, the Cupertino company is selling the revamped View-Master headset on its website.
First spotted by Reddit user dbx001, the “View-Master Virtual Reality Starter Pack” is not only available to ship to your home address, but those interested can also pick it up at the store. When I personally tried to pick one up at a nearby Apple Store location, each store listed the item as “Available in about a week.” That means the View-Master may be making its way to Apple’s retail locations too, in addition to just the website.
Within the past few weeks, Apple has certainly demonstrated its interest in VR, albeit secretly, by bringing together a “large team of experts” to contrive both virtual and augmented reality projects from the privacy of its own offices. In fact, during a recent earnings call, Apple CEO Time Cook expressed his thoughts on Virtual Reality, declaring the technology “cool” and that it has some “interesting applications.”
While it might take some time before we see an iVR (Apple VR?) headset in the flesh, in the meantime you can enjoy a retro throwback, emended for the future for only $30 from Apple’s website.
To be clear, though, Mattel and its View-Master share no partnership affiliation with Apple. The View-Master works with a variety of smartphones aside from the iPhone. This is just a way for the company to make a few bucks off someone else’s product in order to appear competent against the likes of Google’s Cardboard or Samsung’s Gear VR. Nonetheless, it’s probably working, because I’ll be ordering mine just as soon as I finish writing this sentence.
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