The key to virtual reality’s growing popularity is ‘presence.’ Regardless of actual location, it’s the sense of being immersed in time and space achieved by an ingenious fusion of animation, video, still images, and interactivity via a head-mounted display that make for an enthralling user experience.

In order to give virtual reality a try, you don’t need to spend thousands on an expensive headset. Now, your iPhone or Android handset can become a virtual reality device in its own way, particularly when you pair it up with the Google Cardboard headset. This headset works with both iOS and Android and uses your phone as its screen.

With this in mind, here are some of the best apps to experience VR on your smartphone.

1. Orbulus (iOS/Android)

When it comes to the Orbulus, it is one of the most realistic apps to experience virtual reality. It’s an image gallery that gives the user a new viewpoint on real-world places that can’t be visited physically.

Orbulus uses Google’s Photo Sphere technology to create images from renowned tourist spots all over the globe.

2. Vrse (iOS/Android)

If you’re a non-gamer and you want to see virtual reality as an information or news source, then Vrse is for you. Presented in a 360-degree video, this app allows you to tap into a gamut of topical, political, or cultural content curated from sources such as UN, NBC, and The New York Times.

You can watch it either on your phone or in VR via a headset, or in a browser.

3. Jaunt VR (iOS/Android)

Are you ready to experience storytelling via cinematic virtual reality? This app is similar to the Vrse in terms of serious short films and entertaining videos. It uses stereoscopic 3D images (360 degrees) with directional audio for matchless productions.

Through this app, you can check out live performances by artists including Paul McCartney and Jack White, view news channels, and much more.

4. Seene (iOS/Android)

Seene allows you to capture your own photos, then view them in a 360-degree format. You can also use Google’s cardboard camera app instead of your phone camera.

This app offers an interesting feature to its users by allowing them to share 360-degree pictures worldwide. It’s fast and easy-to-use, along with ample inspiration and support from its community.

5. Discovery VR (iOS/Android)

The Discovery Channel drives a thirty-year-old venture into the future. Now you can view Discovery VR’s 360-degree videos on your desktop PCs right away.

And if you want to have an immersive experience, just download the app for your Android or iOS device to work with your headset.

6. Incell VR (iOS/Android)

When it comes to the Incell VR, it’s a half-educational and half-gaming app. It basically revolves around an idea of recreating human cells with the twist that you are flying from them. While, on the other hand, the game section includes racing in a multi-colored environment overrunning a virus wave.

It’s an influential game and you’ll also gain much knowledge along with the fun.

7. New York Times VR (iOS/Android)

The NYT’s content is somewhat similar to the Guardian and companies like RYOT and Vrse. Or you can also say that the NYT is experimenting with virtual reality for everyone in a news format.

This app acts as a platform for displaying virtual reality reports, which take you from the depths of the sea to the surface of Mars using the spire of One World Trade Center.

You can also tap to remove the video from the gallery after watching it, and this app lets you watch the videos without the headset either in the browser or on the smartphone.

 

Featured photo credit: Mashable via i.amz.mshcdn.com

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