Mattel, Google Revamp View-Master To Create Kid-Friendly Virtual Reality Device

Mattel and Google teamed up to create a virtual reality toy for kids.

Mattel and Google teamed up to create a virtual reality toy for kids.

The days of grainy, hard to decipher photos that came with Mattel’s View-Master are apparently behind us. The company, along with Google, revealed an overhaul that transforms the classic kids’ toy into a virtual reality gadget.

Mashable reports the reimagined View-Master is powered by Google’s Cardboard technology and enables children to get a peek at what virtual reality technology is all about.

The View-Master, which looks similar to the original version that launched 76 years ago, requires a smartphone and a corresponding app to work.

To use the device, consumers must slide their mobile phone into the front portion of the device and pair the corresponding app. Users can then experience virtual scenes from Paris, Alcatraz Island and the solar system.

The device, which is set to launch in October, will sell for about $30 and includes a sample experience reel. Mattel says users can purchase additional reels for more immersive experiences.

The revamped View-Master is just the beginning of Mattel’s entrance into virtual reality, officials with the company say.

“We are also in the process of adding light gaming — interactivity is the key to making this work,” Doug Wadleigh, Mattel’s senior vice-president and general manager, said at the device’s unveiling.

Mattel says the new technology is safe for children ages seven and up. Although the device is currently undergoing more testing the company says it shouldn’t cause dizziness, however, use is only recommended for short periods at a time.

Google and Mattel give the View-Master a virtual reality overhaul [Mashable]

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