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New Daydream View (2017) VR Headset Review

Google has updated the Daydream View VR headset for 2017, with a few design tweaks to improve the basic functionality. Here’s our review of the new Daydream View, complete with our full unboxing and hands-on video.

As far as mobile virtual reality goes, Google currently has it nailed. Daydream is one of our favourite VR platforms right now, sat awkwardly on the throne alongside Samsung’s Gear VR.

When the first Daydream View headset came out in 2016, we were already highly impressed. The hardware was well designed and comfortable to wear, while the Daydream store had a handful of solid games and experiences to choose from, with plenty of promise for expansion. In fact, the only serious limitation was how many people could actually enjoy those experiences.

Back then, only Google’s own Pixel and Pixel XL smartphones could be locked inside of the Daydream View, and used as a window into virtual reality worlds. Thankfully the list of supported devices has seriously grown in 2017, with mobiles from Motorola, Huawei, Samsung and Asus now supported also.

Likewise, the Daydream VR store has exploded, with some absolutely brilliant titles now stocked.

As well as announcing the new Pixel 2 handsets and its new mini smart speaker, Google used its October launch event to reveal the brand new Daydream View 2017 headset. Because the original viewer was already great, not much has changed in the past twelve months, although some of the refinements could certainly come in handy.

We’ve been testing the new headset and thoroughly enjoying it, with the new Pixel 2 phones.

Daydream VR: All you need to know

Original Daydream View review

Best Daydream VR games

Daydream View 2017 Review: Unboxing and hands-on video

Here’s what you’ll find in the box with the new Daydream View headset, plus a closer look at the design and changes.

Daydream View 2017 Review: What’s changed?

The new View sports a very similar design to the original Google viewer. You once again have a chunky mask covered in fabric, complete with a strap for attaching it to your noggin. However, this time you get a choice of three different colours: light grey, dark grey and a rather fetching pink model.

That strap is of course fully adjustable and keeps the Daydream View firmly attached to your face, even when moving your head rapidly. This time around you can remove the top strap if so desired however, to keep that fresh hairstyle from being crushed. The procedure is nice and straightforward; just tear the face padding free from its velcro housing and the clip can be unhooked.

Also, the back of the new Daydream View’s strap now has a handy loop for storing your controller when not in use. Good news for anyone whose headset and controller often become separated.

Finally, the new headset also offers a slightly wider viewing area compared with the original viewer. That means Daydream’s games and VR experiences are even more immersive, especially when enjoyed on the gorgeous, Quad HD display of the Pixel 2 XL.

Daydream View 2017 Review: Verdict

The new View is as comfortable as ever to use for extended periods, thanks to the well-designed strap and ample face padding. Meanwhile the store is ever-expanding with new, interesting games and apps. If you own last year’s headset, there’s no real reason to upgrade just yet – the original viewer is still great. However, for anyone who’s just picked up a Daydream-compatible smartphone, this is a great bonus purchase.

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