Google has shipped over five million Cardboards over the last 19 months; an impressive feat considering that the “device” is literally made of cardboard. The internet giant has released a status update on what it has achieved with virtual reality, and it provides us with an idea of how consumers are reacting to the technology.
The number of times the Google Cardboard app has been downloaded from the Play Store far outstrips the amount of physical devices being circulated. Over the last two months, Cardboard app downloads has skyrocketed by 10 million times. This brings total amount of times the app has been downloaded to over 25 million; which is only five times the number of headsets that were shipped.
Google is also reporting that it has more than 1,000 Cardboard apps on the Play Store and 350,000+ hours of Youtube videos watched in VR. We’re not sure if this also includes other VR headsets that have access to Youtube’s VR mode, but it’s still not an entirely bad number. What is more impressive is the 750,000 pictures taken with the Cardboard Camera app; which was only launched last month.
Education has not been left out from Google’s VR plans. The Expeditions programme, which aims to allow students to take VR field trips to places where they normally would be unable to go, has been expanded to some half a million students.
It looks like Google has been making plenty of headway in bringing cheap and affordable VR technology to the masses. There are extremely few VR headsets in the market at the moment, and most of those in development are higher end devices meant to cater to power users. In this sense, Google has been doing an excellent job in showing regular consumers the power of VR; which is important if we want the technology to have a long term future.