Samsung Gear VR to be trialled on Qantas flights

Qantas is adding virtual reality to its in-flight entertainment with the trial of Samsung’s Gear VR.

Australians travelling first class between Sydney and Melbourne may be issued a Gear VR as part of Qantas’ in flight entertainment. Passengers can use the headsets to virtually explore tourist destinations, for in-flight movies and to preview upcoming Qantas products.

Fifteen Gear VRs and accompanying Galaxy Note 4s will be trialled over a three month period. Seven will be shared between the first class lounges in Sydney and Melbourne, while the remaining eight will be used by first class guests during select A380 flights.

Trials will start from mid-February, and availability will expand as of mid-March to flights from Australia to Los Angeles.

Already in development is a 3D virtual reality rendering of Kakadu National Park in the Northern Territory. Other content includes observing an A380 from the runway and footage from the Sydney Harbour Bridge climb. Qantas is working with production company Jaunt to develop additional live action content.

Samsung’s Gear VR headset was developed in conjunction with pioneer Oculus. The headset accessory necessitates the need for a Galaxy Note 4 as it uses the AMOLED display to project a virtual environment.

Currently Australians cannot head into a local retailer and buy Samsung’s Gear VR headset.

Initially the Gear VR accessory was slated for release in November of 2014; however, its local launch has been postponed twice until a yet-to-be-announced date in 2015.

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Tony Ibrahim

Tony Ibrahim

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