Alcatel's Upcoming Smartphone Package Will Double as a VR Viewer

Michele Debczak
iStock / iStock

You don’t need a $600 headset to experience virtual reality. Plenty of VR content can be accessed through your smartphone, and according to some reports, if you buy Alcatel’s upcoming OneTouch Idol 4S, the packaging will give you a built-in way to view it.

Recently leaked information reported by VentureBeat said that the 5.5-inch phone will come in a hard plastic package that can be reused as a Google Cardboard-compatible VR viewer once you open it. Some of the content that’s available for Google’s VR platform includes virtual roller coaster rides, immersive trips through Street View, and 360-degree concert experiences. Basic cardboard viewing kits can be found be found online for around $20, but Alcatel’s goggles would be included in the under $400 price tag and made of higher-quality material.

The VR viewer would still be pretty low-tech—with just two lenses, a single button, and a slot for your phone to make it Google Cardboard compatible—but it's a smart feature to include with a phone whose tagline is “Your World Augmented." Alcatel is expected to officially announce both the Idol 4 and 4S at this month’s Mobile World Congress and begin selling them in May.

[h/t The Verge]