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LG Plans VR Headset Giveaway With G3 Phone

Seoul, Korea – LG plans this month to give away a free VR for G3 virtual-reality headset with the purchase of a new LG G3 smartphone in select markets.

Purchasers also get a free VR game, Robobliteration.

The headset is based on Google’s Cardboard design, which uses a smartphone’s display as the virtual-reality display. A smartphone is inserted into the viewer and held in place.

Multiple third-party suppliers offer pre-made headsets for phones of various brands and sizes sizes up to $36.95. Some suppliers also offer do-it-yourself kits for various phones out of real cardboard. Premade and DIY headsets can be used with 26 virtual-reality apps, including games, available for free and up to $3.99.

The promotion will be available in the U.S. on a date that wasn’t announced.

LG’s G3-specific headset features a side-mounted neodymium ring magnet that works with the G3’s magnetic gyroscope sensor to select applications and scroll through menus without touching the display.

The VR for G3 requires no assembly other than inserting the phone into the viewer. When inserted, users view apps through the G3’s Quad HD display. The headset is also designed to use the G3’s back-side keys, including volume control. The design enables the VR for G3 to take advantage of the phone’s 1-watt speaker to deliver sound effects that complement the visuals, the company said.

“By leveraging Google Cardboard, not only are regular consumers able to participate in the VR experience, [but] we’ll be able to introduce this technology to future developers who may one day show us how VR can be used to improve our lives,” said Chris Yie, VP and head of marketing communications for LG Electronics Mobile Communications.