Samsung Gear VR and the Focus Issue

In 2015 and this year, Samsung joined forces with Oculus to deliver a portable VR headset compatible with Samsung phones. The Samsung Gear VR is a lightweight VR headset which brings the whole VR experience in an affordable package, do read our review of the Samsung Gear VR.

The Samsung Gear VR is really fun if you don’t want to buy a very costly VR headset for PC. The Samsung Gear VR is compatible with Galaxy S6, S6 Edge, Note 5, S6 Edge+, S7 and S7 Edge. But few users have indicated that they are having focus issues with their Samsung Gear VR devices.

After reviewing the HTC Vive, Oculus Rift and the Samsung Gear VR, I can say that VR technology for consumers is still in its infancy and it may take time to adjust to this new technology and the issues associated to it, which are are responsible for VR sickness, especially the focus issue in the Samsung Gear VR headset. A reddit user facing the same issue with Gear VR described its experience as, “everything seems a bit blurry and not very sharp. Especially text”. So it means that the focus issue makes everything blurry to the user who is using the Gear VR headset.

Here is an analysis of the Samsung Gear VR and the Focus Issue.

What is the Focus Issue?

As said before, VR technology is very new and most people are also new to it. The people trying it for the first time are not used to the different experience because they can’t see their arms and legs but can only see the screen in the VR headset. This causes VR sickness, as explained in our other articles.

Samsung Gear VR Focus Issues

The main problem of the Samsung Gear VR that is known to cause VR sickness is the focus issue. Many users have complained that the Gear VR lenses are not showing the image very clearly. There are a few points that need to be mentioned here to fully explain the Samsung Gear VR focus issue.

The main reason for the focus issue is the Interpupillary Distance or IPD. IPD is the distance between the center of the pupils of the two eyes. So we know every person’s body is different including the IPD. Samsung either did not care about keeping in view the IPD of different types of people while designing or they used cheap lenses which fail to work in focusing the image correctly. While the focus may be good for some people, it is not good all the time.

You can’t do anything if your IPD is an obstacle to enjoy using the Samsung Gear VR, but there are other things which may cause the focus issue:

Things You Can Do to Correct the Focus Issue

There are some small problems which cause the focus issue in the Samsung Gear VR and most of these problems people don’t realize very quickly. So here are some remedies to tackle the Samsung Gear VR focus issue:

  1. Rotate the focus adjustment wheel on the top of the Gear VR to adjust the lenses until the image looks clear. It may take some time to adjust the lenses and getting used to them.
  2. Lens protectors are attached to the lens when the Gear VR leaves the factory. You should remove those protectors before you use the Gear VR for the first time to see more clearly.
  3. Make sure you keep the Gear VR clean especially the lens to make sure there is no dust on it. Unclear images are mostly because of dust and fingerprints on the lens. Use a microfiber cloth to clean the Gear VR.
  4. If you have poor eyesight and you use glasses, you won’t be able to fit the Gear VR on your head. If you can use contact lenses, then do use them so that you can fit the Gear VR and see more clearly.

The Samsung Gear VR is a really good and affordable VR headset if you have a Samsung phone, but still it needs a lot of improvement. Samsung Gear VR and the focus issue really using it difficult at times, but when the focus does work good, it’s really fun to use.

One Comment

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  1. It just wouldn’t focus, period. Within ten minutes, I simply packed it back up, and walked it out with the trash; glad that it was free, so I didn’t feel bad about disposing of it!

    It’s been two hours since looking through them for about three minutes, and I am still violently sick.

    What a waste!

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