Stream PC Desktop to Phone for Virtual Reality (Now With Head Tracking!)

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I've loved virtual reality for a long time. Although you won't need one, I finally got my hands on a 3D Printer, and was able to print a VR headset.

Unfortunately, this doesn't come with any electronics. I've been using my iPod Touch as its screen.

This tutorial will teach you how stream your PC to your Android or iOS device with minimal lag, and head tracking. I've been able to watch movies and play PC games such as Portal in stereoscopic 3D, with full head movement.

Let's get started!

Step 1: Currently Available Apps for Streaming

There are five programs that I use to stream my desktop to my phone/iPod. All of them have different pros and cons.

1. Kinoni Remote Desktop is probably the least laggy streamer out there. It can be downloaded at http://www.kinoni.com/

Pros:

I ran many games like Portal and saw no perceptible lag while in game.

High framerates.

Free!

Cons:

The audio quality isn't great.

Android only.

2. Trinus Gyre is definitely the second best. The streaming is just above average, but what really puts it ahead is its built in head tracking. The moment you start streaming, depending on your settings, the mouse should move automatically as you rotate your head. It can be downloaded at http://oddsheepgames.com/?page_id=134

Pros:

Built in head tracking? Yes, yes, yes!

Relatively high framerates.

Cons:

Android only.

Head tracking needs a some work.

Costs money (5.27 USD for the app; the PC streamer is free)

3. Kainy would have been second on this list a few months ago, I didn't know about Trinus Gyre yet (it might not have been out). It can be downloaded at http://kainy.com/download.html

Pros:

Kainy can stream up to 60 FPS (frames per second) with minimal lag.

Cons:

Free version has ads, which makes it unsuitable for VR gaming.

Android only. (Support to iOS supposedly coming soon)

4. Splashtop is number four because it only streams at 30 FPS, with pretty noticeable lag/jitter. It can be downloaded at http://splashtop.com

Pros: iOS AND Android compatibility! Yay!

Free on Android!

Cons:

Slow, especially on iOS devices. Like, really slow.

Costs money for the iOS app (5 USD)

Unusable for VR gaming.

5. Teamviewer is actually not that bad considering that it was originally intended for business. It can be downloaded at http://teamviewer.com

Pros: iOS AND Android compatibility! Yay!

Free!

Cons:

Lag, Lag, Lag. Everywhere. Unusable for VR gaming.

Step 2: Head Tracking

I have 2 favorites for head tracking.


1. A Small Gyro Mouse is actually incredibly fast. If there's any lag, it's imperceptible to me! I ordered a Tronsmart one at http://www.amazon.com/Tronsmart-TSM-01-Keyboard-Mo...

Pros:

Wireless

No lag that I can notice

Relatively accurate tracking

Rechargeable batteries included, along with a charging cable.

Pretty small.

Cons:

Looks a goofy when you mount this to your head, whether it's by rubber banding it to your headphones or anything.

Difficult to mount reliably to headset. Easier to just mount to headphones.

2. Trinus Gyre was mentioned in the previous page. If you didn't read it, it's a streaming program that uses your smartphone's gyroscope to emulate mouse movement. Download here: http://oddsheepgames.com/?page_id=134

Pros:

No need for extra sensor.

Looks better than putting a remote on your head. (That's what the Tronsmart Air mouse looks like)

Cons:
Android only.

Only as fast as your WiFi and your smartphone.

Tracking is still in development; it needs some work. (Slight lag, drift, etc)

Step 3: Conclusion

Now that you have read this tutorial (and hopefully downloaded some software too) you should be able to play some VR games with your mobile phone VR headset.

I hope you enjoyed!

If you have any questions, please PM me!

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    60 Discussions

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    BrendanC1LucasK1

    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    Excellent point! I didn't include Limelight because the requirement doesn't end at nVidia. You need a pretty good GPU... It's gotta be GTX, and in the 600 series. Sure, a GTX 650 ti boost won't break the bank, but I have a GTX 560 ti, and wasn't even able to try it. Therefore, I could not include it in my review.

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    SquidymanBrendanC1

    Reply 3 years ago on Introduction

    I can use limelight (GTX 960), but you can only stream games using it. Until that changes, I don't see it being ideal

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    BrendanC1Squidyman

    Reply 3 years ago on Introduction

    Well, as of right now, the main use Virtual Reality has IS gaming. I have yet to honestly see an incredibly innovative virtual reality application that doesn't have some sort of gaming aspect. Even so, it is too bad that limelight only works with NVidia GameStream enabled games. I'm sorry that this specific solution isn't working for your needs. Definitely check out the options that are featured in the i'ble though!

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    sumsboy.BrendanC1

    Reply 2 years ago

    you can add remote desktop in Geforce experience

    look for mstsc.exe

    locatd in C/windows/system32

    then you can play any game and watch movies

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    SquidymanBrendanC1

    Reply 3 years ago on Introduction

    I am a bit different in the sense I am looking to use the googles as an FPV set for my quadcopter. I need to find a program that takes a AV to digital converter and sends it to my phone for wearing with my goggles. I think some of the programs you listed will do that.

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    BrendanC1Justins14

    Reply 3 years ago on Introduction

    As of right now, the games you can play with Limelight are the games that are supported with NVidia's Gamestream.

    This list (http://shield.nvidia.co.uk/pc-game-list/) should get you started on which games are supported. There are a bunch of games that aren't mentioned on that page that ARE supported though, so don't get discouraged if it's not on the page. But to answer your question, the majority of the compatible games are also available on Steam. The two things aren't related though... if you buy Portal 2 on a disk (not Steam) it will still show up on Limelight.

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    ddas3

    1 year ago

    how to get kinoni for mac ? only windows pc version is available

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    Zenoscope

    2 years ago

    thanks for the 'ible, I've used trinus vr (formerly trinus gyre) for the streaming and freepi for the head tracking. works pretty well, trinus does sbs and you can change the interpupillary distance as well.

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    rad-io

    2 years ago

    You can try Remotr. I'm using it for streaming games from my PC, it's the best available today :)

    1 reply
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    Arief98rad-io

    Reply 2 years ago

    It doesn't support SBS display right?

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    NathalieB18

    2 years ago

    Hi, I have my own headset and an iPhone.. I would like to use this simply to see my desktop in the goggles.. I installed splashtop but that doesn't do the split screen.. Any ideas on how to acheive this ?

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    BrendanC1peter---peter

    Reply 2 years ago

    Hmm, that's odd. The last time I used it, it was definitely virus-free.

    It's possible that has changed, so be careful.

    If you're using McAfee or Norton you can safely ignore the warning though.

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    MakerMan234BrendanC1

    Reply 2 years ago

    I herd of trinus and i found out that there is a trial version for the android

    and a lot of people had no problems with it

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    JilkO1

    2 years ago

    I used trinus gyre and it works great, a little lag but not much. I just got the vr box 2.0, stuck a gyroscopic / air mouse on the strap and linked my phone with trinius VR. It costed about £40 but it is worth it!

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    MakerMan234

    2 years ago

    I herd of trinus and i found out that there is a trial version for the android

    and a lot of people had no problems with it

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    fpiras

    2 years ago

    I made my DIY Virtual Reality headset for Ipad mini: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O-7CeCbD6Yk