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LensPass is a better way to share VR with an audience.
With no technical expertise needed, you can use LensPass to implement smooth and successful VR screenings using a variety of formats and customization options.
LensPass currently works with all Gear VR headsets (Samsung Galaxy device required).
LensPass is also supported on Oculus Go headsets.
Support for Daydream phones and headsets will be available soon.
Purchase or rent convenient WeLens VR Kits. Each VR kit comes prepared with LensPass for your screening.
LensPass currently supports 360° video content in MP4 and MKV formats. It currently does not support non-video VR content.
If you don't already have content to share, LensPass can help you select content from a variety of categories, including "Most Popular", "Entertainment", "Travel", "Art" and "Marketing".
The Browse Tab of the LensPass mobile app also lets you browse video experiences.
Contact WeLens Support for assistance with preparing content once you have made your selections. Some content may require additional licensing from the creator or publisher.
See the LensPass Pricing for more information on pricing options and the LensPass free trial option.
Once subscribed to LensPass, you can disable membership renewal at any time from your account settings.
LensPass is an integrated solution consisting of an online dashboard, an Android app, and a VR player app.
This section will walk you through how to use each one of these products.
You can register for a new account at WeLens.com, or from the LensPass app.
Once you are logged into the WeLens.com website, you can do a number of things from the online account dashboard:
Tap the Add Screening button to create a new screening.
When setting up or adding a screening, you will choose a screening name and select one or more videos to use for your screening. You can also select a screening configuration and add optional customizations.
The LensPass app for Android lets you manage and update each of your devices and control screenings.
Start by logging into an account from the LensPass app. You can tap the Get Started button or the Account shortcut in the navigation menu to show the Sign In dialog. This dialog also has an option to Sign Up for a new account.
Once you are logged in, your device will be connected to your account and will appear on the online account dashboard. A short ID is assigned to the device and is generated from a longer hardware device ID.
The screening syncing feature is convenient and automated. When your device is assigned to an screening, videos and screening settings will automatically download to your device.
There are several other useful features offered by the LensPass Android app:
LensPlayer is the VR player app that integrates with LensPass to show VR experiences with customized settings
When your device is not assigned to an screening, launching LensPlayer from an application menu shortcut will open it into Menu Navigation Mode that offers various navigation options and opens to a menu of videos that have been downloaded or sideloaded into your device's welens folder.
Once a selected video is playing, there are a variety of navigation controls available when you tap your touchpad:
When assigned to an screening, LensPlayer opens in a theater mode where normal controls and navigation features are disabled and viewers are in a cinema waiting area before their screening begins.
The LensPlayer app does not require the LensPass Android app, and without a screening configuration provided, it will automatically import videos from the following directories:
You can configure your screenings with VR video experiences and your choice of options.
Any device with the LensPass Android App can be used to remote control viewings on other devices. The remote control device and playback devices should be connected to the same WiFi network.
Preparing headsets for a remote control screening: Once the video experiences have finished downloading on a device, launch LensPlayer and it will show a Theater Mode waiting area screen:
Starting a remote control screening: From the LensPass app on your control device, select the Remote Control tab from the navigation menu. This tab shows a list of any other devices found on the same wireless network. When devices are available, there is both a large play button that broadcasts a play command to all available devices, and small play buttons for each device that only broadcast commands to that device. You must hold down your finger for a couple seconds on the play button to activate it - this press and hold gesture avoids accidentally starting playback.
Once a video has started playing on a device, you should see its title along with for how long the video has been playing. During playback, you can use a large stop button or smaller stop button to respectively stop playback on all devices or just one device. As with the play button, a two second press and hold is required.
To optionally target a specific video to be played back from a selection of multiple videos, tap the small book icon to the right of the Instructions button as shown in the above screenshot. You will then be able to select a video to play, and can scroll with your finger to scroll through the list of available videos. Make sure that the playback devices already have any selected video file on their filesystem.
Once you have selected a video, it will be displayed next to the book icon. To remove your selection, tap the book icon again and select the No Selection option at the top of the selection dialog.
You can also optionally specify a countdown of seconds for the screening that will display in the Theater Mode lobby before the screening begins.
Device Health Warnings: When a device has lower than 10% battery or has a temperature of greater than 37 degrees celsius, a will be shown over its device icon on the remote control view.
Any type of wireless network can be used for a remote control group screening. Internet access is not required. All devices must be connected to the same network - even a tiny travel router such as the GL-MT300N works.
The table below offers a convenient comparison between the three main screening styles to choose from.
"Synced screening" options are used to make all devices start playback at the same time.
|1||Quick Start||The easiest non-synced screening option. When the viewer puts on the headset, the VR experience will automatically begin with an optional countdown.|
|2||Remote Control||Connect all playback devices to a wireless network and use one device as a remote control for your screening.|
|3||Menu Navigation Mode||Touchpad and back button controls are enabled and the VR player opens to a menu screen for selecting a VR experience.|
You can setup a custom image to appear in LensPlayer, by uploading an image at the Edit Screening page on the online dashboard. You can also customize the thumbnail images shown for each video by uploading images on the Edit Video page for each video.
You can also setup a custom message from your WeLens.com screening settings. This message will show to viewers before your video experience begins.
If you have a custom message set, the custom image or video thumbnail will render in a small size of 625x375px. If there is no custom message, the image will render in a medium of 1250x750px. You can check the Extra Large Image option that instead of showing a theater title or custom message, will only render a large image in 2000x1200px resolution.
In some situations, you may not be able to successfully implement a remote control screening, or you don't want to wait for the specified scheduled screening time.
Double tap the small elevated "back button" on the right side of an idle headset to manually start playback.
LensPass automatically collects some basic reporting statistics that help you to determine audience engagement with your screenings.
Stats are available from the "Screening Stats" link on the WeLens.com dashboard page for each screening. If no statistics have been collected yet, some example stats are shown.
Statistics include a daily breakdown of content that was viewed and it can be filtered by device or by day.
The number of incomplete viewings - or viewings that were ended before the content was finished - is also included. Viewing sessions that last under 20 seconds are not counted as viewings.
Not seeing the latest stats? Statistics can be collected while offline, but you must connect your device to the internet and open the LensPass Android app to send the latest offline statistics to the WeLens server for this data to be included in reports.
Sometimes, "sideloading" or manually loading videos onto devices can be a convenient alternative to downloading video, especially on a slow connection or to update a large number of devices.
To sideload video on devices, add the video file to the welens folder on the phone. This folder is created the first time you open the LensPass app on the device.
3D Video setup: Before you upload or sideload 3D video, make sure to check the appropriate box for the "3D Top-Bottom" or "3D Right-Left" options for the video to render correctly in the player.
Advanced technically savvy users may sometimes want to use a text editor application to manually modify the config.yaml file on the welens directory of their devices.
Here is an overview of the options available to use in your configuration file:
- theater_mode - if set to "true", LenPass VR player disables controls and features a streamlined playback experience. Default is "false"
- theater_title - a text title to display in LensPass theater mode
- custom_message - a one line personalized message to display in the LensPass theater mode
- heads_up - a countdown of seconds in theater mode until the viewer is prompted to manually start - and can be a useful fallback for the remote control.
- screening_schedule - A minutes-based schedule that allows for offline syncing of headset playback. Choices are 5, 10, 15, 20, or 30 minutes.
- auto_reset - If set to true, app will reset when viewer removes headset for at least 10 seconds. Useful for kiosks and unattended viewings.
- video_auto_start - If set to true, video will automatically start when the LensPass VR player app is opened.
- headphones_notification - If set to true, the LensPass VR player app will notify the viewer when headphones are not connected. These notifications are not displayed on Oculus Go devices.
- image_size - If set to "medium", the theater mode image thumbnail will be shown at double its normal size, at a resolution of 1250x750px instead of 625x375px. If set to "large", the image will be shown at an extra large size of 2000x1200px, with no title or message fields shown.
- intro_animation - If set to false, the theater mode intro animation with the WeLens logo is not shown.
- lobby - If set to "none", the sky background and reflective pool are not rendered.
The config file can also contain configurations for a sequential playlist of videos using the following format:
video_list: - video: filename: video1.mp4 format: 360 audio: ambix_9_2 - video: filename: video2.mp4 format: 360 stereo: TB volume: 0.8 delay: 2.5
In the example above, "video1.mp4" is 360-degrees but not 3D and uses 2nd order spatial audio, while "video2.mp4"is 3D using a top-bottom ("TB") format, and uses optional "volume" and "delay" properties.
The "format" property is a required string value that should be "360" for an 360-degree video, and should be "widescreen" for non-360 videos that should be projected on a virtual screen.
The "stereo" property is an optional string value for 3D videos that should be "TB" for the top-bottom stereo format, and "RL" or "LR" respectively for "right-left" and "left-right" stereo formats. If this property is not specified, the video renders in a 2D monoscopic format.
The "volume" property is an optional float value between 0-1 for volumes lower than the default volume, or higher than 1 to boost volume beyond the default volume. This property defaults to 1 if not specified.
The "delay" property is an optional float value for the number of seconds to pause on a black screen between videos. This property defaults to 1 if not specified.
The "audio" property is an optional string value for spatial audio (see the Using Spatial Audio section below for details) that should be either "ambix_4", "ambix_9", or "ambix_9_2".
You can set a custom thumbnail image to appear on the lobby screen of the VR player, and use the image_size config property to set the size of the image.
You can either sideload the image with filename splash-logo.jpg into the welens folder on the device or upload an image using the online screening setup dashboard.
It is recommended to use an image with a size of 2000x1200px or using the same proportions.
You can set a custom thumbnail image to appear for a specific video shown in menu navigation mode by placing a image file in the welens/data folder with the same name as the corresponding video file.
For example, if the video is welens/MyVideo.mp4 then you would setup an image with filename welens/data/MyVideo.jpg to be used as its thumbnail.
It is recommended to use an image with a size of 2000x1200px or using the same proportions.
In some cases, you may want to use another app instead of the LensPlayer app for a screening. From the online Account Dashboard tab, tap the Create a custom app screening option under the My Screenings tab.
Name your new custom app project, and then at the next screen upload your APK file.
Once you are signed into the LensPass Android app, your custom APK will download and will be signed for the device, and you will be prompted to install it.
High video resolution increases the visual quality of the image, but can result in lower framerates and tends to more quickly increase the temperature of the playback device.
Recommended video specs for are listed below. The "best quality" column is recommended for single viewings. The "best performance" column is better for screenings where a device will be used for multiple viewings without time to cool down.
|Device Model||Best Quality||Best Performance||3D Top-Bottom|
|Oculus Go (2018)||4096x2048@60fps or 3840×2160@60fps, 35 Mb/s||4096x2048@60fps or 3840×2160@60fps, 35 Mb/s||4096x4096@60fps, 35 Mb/s|
|S8/Note8 (2017)||4096x2048@60fps or 3840×2160@60fps, 35 Mb/s||4096x2048@60fps or 3840×2160@60fps, 35 Mb/s||3840x3840@60fps, 35 Mb/s|
|S7/Note5 (2016)||3840×2160@30fps, 30 Mb/s||3200x1600@30fps, 20 Mb/s||3840x3840@30fps, 20 Mb/s|
|S6/Note4 (2015)||3200x1600@30fps, 20 Mb/s||2560x1440@30fps, 10 Mb/s||3200x3200@30fps, 15 Mb/s|
The LensPass VR player supports several different types of spatial audio. For each type of supported audio format, place a WAV or TBE file in the welens folder using the following guidelines:
LensPass supports external displays for mirroring what a viewer is seeing in the headset during a screening. Please contact our support for more information on setting up mirroring on external displays.
This section contains tips for common troubleshooting issues.
The standalone Oculus Go device works well with our LensPlayer VR app and supports all of its features, including remote control functionality. However, there are a few issues currently affecting the Oculus Go that are not present on Gear VR headsets.
Controller is Required to Start Applications - All apps, not just LensPlayer, require the paired handheld controller to be used to start them. There is currently no workaround for this. A controller can only be paired to one headset at a time, and when using multiple headsets it is helpful to label controllers for the headsets to which they are paired.
"Enter VR" Lock Screen - After the headset is not worn for 30 seconds, an "Enter VR" screen will appear.
Normally, the handheld controller is required to exit this screen. Using the mobile Oculus app, it is possible to enable "Developer Mode" so that the volume button on top of the Oculus Go can instead be used to exit the "Enter VR" screen, as shown in the screenshot above. There is currently no way to entirely disable this feature.
Sideloading Content - The LensPass Android app is not supported on Oculus Go, and the only way to currently sideload content and settings for LensPlayer is to connect the Oculus Go to a computer with a USB cable. Once USB Storage is available, the LensPlayer app will support conveniently importing content and settings using a MicroUSB OTG Drive.
When contacting support, we recommend using a built-in LensPass diagnostic feature that helps us better support you.
First, make sure your device is connected to the internet. To send device diagnostics, navigate the LensPass app to the "Device" tab, and tap the "Send Device Diagnostic" button. You'll see a notification confirming that the diagnostics have been sent successfully.