How to Use Samsung Gear VR With Any Phone – Full Guide, Tips, FAQs & More

You may have thought that you can’t use the Samsung Gear VR Headset with any other phone. 

After all, Samsung did develop it to work alongside their particular smartphones such as the Samsung Note 4, Samsung Galaxy S6, etc. 

However, this post provides clear instructions on how you can utilize the Samsung Gear VR Headset with other Android phones. 

Quick Summary

This post delves deep into how you can use the Samsung Gear VR with any Android phone. 

We will discuss the following: 

  • How to fit the phone onto the headset
  • What software to use 
  • Frequently asked questions (FAQs) 

So without further ado, let’s get into it.

Fitting Your Phone Onto the Samsung Gear VR

First of all, what you need to know is that the Samsung Gear VR connects to the corresponding smartphone via a micro USB port. Once it’s connected, you use the Gear VR’s clamping mechanism to hold the phone firmly in place. 

Fitting Your Phone Onto the Samsung Gear VR

Hence, the phone you intend to place within the Samsung Gear VR needs to: 

  • Be roughly the same screen size as the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 (About 5.7 inches)
  • Have a micro USB port

It’s important to note that the micro USB port won’t actually be used to connect your phone to the headset as far as the software side of it goes. Instead, the connection will only be used to fit your phone firmly in place. 

You won’t be able to have any type of software link between your phone and the Samsung Gear VR if it’s not one of Samsung’s supported models. 

If you have a smartphone that is smaller than 5.7 inches but has a micro USB port, you can try fitting that as well. The port really makes it much easier to securely hold phones in place, even if they are smaller than the recommended size. 

Despite all this, if you feel that your phone is not securely placed inside the Samsung Gear VR, don’t use it. Make sure that you are comfortable with how your phone fits before you actually use it for any VR gameplay. 

If you don’t properly fit the phone inside the Samsung Gear VR Headset, you’ll risk damaging your phone and even the headset.

We tried the following phones with the Samsung Gear VR Headset: 

  • The Nexus 5
  • The HTC One M8
  • The LG G3

All of them fit quite securely and we were able to enjoy many neat VR experiences. 

Don’t feel hesitant to try out other techniques if your phone doesn’t fit properly. 
The key is to take your time to ensure maximum security. 

You could try adding some sort of case around your phone to make it thicker or larger. Some sort of felt or cushioning could also be added alongside your phone to act as padding. 

As long as you’re comfortable with how the phone fits, you’ll be fine. 

The Software to Use

As we mentioned earlier, there’s no real software link between your phone and the Samsung Gear VR Headset if it’s not one of its officially supported models. 

You are essentially using the headset for its mounting capabilities and its lenses alone. You won’t be able to take advantage of the Gear VR’s built-in Oculus software. 

That being said, there are still a lot of other neat VR experiences that you can easily check out through this type of setup. You can download apps like Cardboard to check out many of the fascinating VR experiences that it has to offer. 

You can also utilize it to check out all of the VR videos available on platforms such as Netflix, Youtube, etc. 

If you’d like to download VR videos to watch them at a later time, you can download players for VR videos such as VaR’s VR Video player, on your phone. 

Many people wrongfully believe that you can’t play games on such a setup. 

Of course, you can. Although, you’ll need some type of external motion controller or bluetooth controller that can connect to your smartphone. However, if you have that, it’ll be easy as pie to control menus as well as VR games. 

Adjustments to Make 

When you first fit your phone and load up some VR experience on your phone, it may look less than ideal. Not to worry though as you can still fix it by tinkering with some settings and adjustments of your Samsung Gear VR Headset. 

Firstly, the manual focus wheel of the Samsung Gear VR is what you should tinker with. It’ll allow you to move the display forwards or backwards to adjust focus. 

Can I Use VR on Any Phone? 

As mentioned earlier, you’ll need some type of external controller to navigate through menus or play VR games. However, if you intend to just watch VR videos, then you won’t really need a controller (although, it’s still more convenient if you have one). 

It should also be noted that the Samsung Gear VR Headset’s volume controls and touchpad will not work with this type of setup.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) 

Can I Use the Samsung Gear VR With Other Phones? 

Yes. You can definitely employ some workarounds to make other phones work with the Samsung Gear VR Headset. 

However, it can seem like a lot of work and the functionality can often be limited. Hence, we don’t really recommend it. You’re better off buying a headset that’s better compatible with the smartphone you have. 

Can I Use VR on Any Phone? 

If you have a smartphone that’s an Android or an iOS device and it came out after 2018, it’ll have at least some type of VR support. 

If you have a newer phone, then it’s even easier as all you’ll really need is a mobile-based VR headset. 

What Apps Do I Need to Run the Samsung Gear VR? 

If you’re using the Samsung Gear VR with an officially supported Samsung phone, then you’ll need the Oculus app. 

However, if you’re using some other Android phone, then you’ll need a VR player or some other type of app that relates to the type of experience you want to run on it.

Can I Use the Samsung Gear VR Without the Oculus App? 

Yes, you can indeed use the Samsung Gear VR without the Oculus app. 

The functionality might be limited depending on the smartphone that you use alongside it but you’ll still be able to use it to experience VR.

What is Metaverse VR? 

The Metaverse is a virtual world that you experience through a VR headset.

 Its aim is to mimic aspects of the real world using technologies such as VR, AR, social media and cryptocurrency. 

Wrapping Things Up… 

As you can see, if you’d really like to use some other phone with the Samsung Gear VR, it’s not that hard to do so. 

However, we do feel that the functionality and usability is fairly limited. We don’t really recommend it. 

If you have a smartphone that’s not one of Samsung’s officially supported models, just go for some other mobile-based VR headset rather than the Samsung Gear VR. 


  • Victor Marquez

    Victor is the Editor in Chief at Techtyche. He tests the performance and quality of new VR boxes, headsets, pedals, etc. He got promoted to the Senior Game Tester position in 2021. His past experience makes him very qualified to review gadgets, speakers, VR, games, Xbox, laptops, and more. Feel free to check out his posts.

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