First Look: Mattel Virtual Reality View-Master

Mattel Virtual Reality Viewmaster

Back in February, Mattel announced that the View-Master would be getting a makeover. Today, we received a tip from one of our scouts that it had showed up on A quick search through the store finder showed a few in stock here in LA, so we drove to Inglewood and found a stock clerk willing to get one out of the back for us before they found a place on the shelves.

Carly unboxed the View-Master VR as soon as we got back.

The View-Master Virtual Reality Starter Pack includes the headset, which is Works With Cardboard certified, and a Preview Reel modeled after the old paper reels of the View-Master 1.0. The headset is compatible with many iPhone and Android devices. We tested it with both the iPhone 6 and Note 4.


The starter pack gives you access to three different apps: Space, Destinations and National Geogaphic: Wildlife. Once the app is opened on the phone, you can look at the Preview Reel to activate it. When you do, an augmented reality overlay shows a taste of what’s to come on top of the little white disk.

National Geographic: Wildlife took us to learn about Capybaras in the Rainforest, Kangaroos in the Outback, and Zebras in the Savannah. The Space app let us see a shuttle up close under the Milky Way. Destinations took us to Greece, London, New York, and Chichen Itza.

mattel-virtual-reality-viewmaster2Overall, it is what a Google Cardboard device is supposed to be, a great first exposure to VR. It’s a smart play by Mattel as Google just announced that they will be bringing their virtual reality Expeditions Pioneer Program to thousands of schools around the world, all for free.


Concessions were made. Interaction is a bit limited. Some of the surroundings are pretty basic. Additional information is thrown up in windows and video boxes floating in the air. But this is a first stab at the future of field trips. From this day forward, any kid anywhere will be able to travel the world, and the universe, to learn and experience what a textbook could never do justice.
You can download the apps from iTunes and Google Play here:


Google Play



National Geographic: Wildlife


About the Scout

Eric Chevalier

Eric Chevalier co-founded VRScout after a decade of content marketing in sports, entertainment and gaming. When he isn't sandy, Eric is scouring the streets of Los Angeles in pursuit of the best new storytellers from Hollywood to Silicon Beach.


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