Forget Oculus. Here at Computex, a smartphone accessory called PhoneStation is turning heads. Made by Taiwanese company View Phone Technology (VPT), the headset is a viewing dock for your smartphone and will be available in Taiwan by the end of the year for NT $1,000 ($35).
The PhoneStation is, as its name suggests, a dock for your phone. It’s compatible with smartphones with display sizes between 3.5 and 6 inches, but is not a one-size-fits-all solution. You’ll have to indicate upon purchase what dimensions you’d prefer, and that dictates the size of the transparent plastic dock in front of the goggles.
You’ll also have to download a third-party 3D app that splits your screen into two frames. The PhoneStation uses a special lens that then combines these two images into one three-dimensional picture. On this unit, VPT told us they were using an app specially designed for the demo, and that a number of apps are freely available on Android and iOS. A check on the Play store showed some titles such as “Multi Screen” and “Split View Multi Screen” are available.
During our time with the PhoneStation, a Galaxy Note 3 running an app designed for the accessory worked well, and a movie trailer for “The Avengers” looked realistic and clear. The frame was comfortable, light and easy to wear, adhering firmly to our head. VPT told us it intends to make the accessory easier to adjust by implementing binocular-style controls to improve the fit.
You can also use the goggles as magnifying glasses for precise work such as watch parts repair or precise drawing. We imagine this also means you could theoretically turn on the camera app and use the PhoneStation as goggles that literally augment your reality. The company hasn’t announced plans to bring PhoneStation to the U.S. yet.