A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this app.
Limited content, but what's available can be a great introduction to new places, sites, or information. The immersive experience is likely to grab kids' attention in a way that simple 2D coverage can't. Kids may be inspired to learn more about what they see, then come back to visit these faraway places again.
Ease of Play
Step-by-step instructions for setting up and pairing your phone to your viewer. Once you get used to it, navigating through the virtual worlds is pretty easy.
Products & Purchases
When looking at the home screen outside the viewer, there's a listing of more virtual reality apps, some available for free and some for a price.
Parents Need to Know
Is It Any Good?
A few well-chosen experiences offer only a small taste of the immersive feel of virtual reality. Google Cardboard works best as a tutorial for how to use virtual reality with your phone and a viewer and as a sample of the different things that virtual reality can offer. It's great fun to feel like you're standing along a canal in Venice or to look all around you to explore an exhibition hall at the National Air and Space Museum. The fun will probably end quickly, though, since each of these experiences is a still photo (rather than a video) and once you've turned all around -- or moved forward or backward a bit -- there's not much else to see. The animated arctic journey offers motion but is also a pretty quick shot. Bottom line: Virtual reality can be a super-cool experience, and Google Cardboard feels like a limited practice run. Kids who are enchanted by the experience will certainly want more. Parents may want to consider the potential physical and emotional effects, particularly on sensitive kids who may feel nauseated, get headaches, or feel overwhelmed by the immersive experience. VR isn't recommended for little kids.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.