Speck is one of the best-known smartphone case manufacturers. Its products normally combine practicality and durability with attractive designs in a way not many other companies manage. Its Candyshell Grip case is one of the most recognizable around, thanks to the grippy, (usually) brightly colored stripes on the outer shell. Now, the company has decided to dive in to the world of virtual reality with its latest product: Pocket VR.
Pocket VR from Speck combines the Candyshell Grip case for Samsung Galaxy S6 with a collapsible plastic Google Cardboard-certified viewer, bringing Cardboard to a set that’s not actually made from cardboard. Instead, it’s made from a tough plastic, similar to its cases.
When in use, like all Cardboard sets, two built-in bespoke lenses lets users immerse themselves in VR/Cardboard content like 3D videos on YouTube. Unlike most Cardboard sets, it’s not a case of sliding your phone in to an encased square box. Rather, the Pocket VR fits on to the CandyShell Grip case and can be detached, then folded in to a neat pocketable package. When closed, lenses are protected from dust and scratches.
Speck will sell the Pocket VR in a combo package with the CandyShell Grip case.
As part of the announcement, Speck has also revealed that it’s partnering with cinematic VR company, Jaunt to create a custom viewing experience exclusively for CES 2016.
While I really like the design, and the fact that it’s not some horrible box-like set made from cardboard, I do question the timing of the launch, particularly with Samsung about to release the Galaxy S7. By releasing a version for a phone that’s almost a year old already, Speck has surely missed an opportunity, unless they’re secretly also working on a version for Galaxy S7 as well.
Speck’s Pocket VR with CandyShell Grip will be available to buy for Galaxy S6 at some point this spring and will cost $69.95.