This weekend Samsung announced they would be giving a free Gear VR headset to anyone pre-ordering the new Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge, with a “while supplies last” caveat. With pre-orders opening today, we’ve learned that Samsung will be giving out more than 300,000 units in the US alone.
Update (2/23/16, 1:20AM): Samsung has reached out to us to clarify that the 300,000 headset limit only applies to Samsung and certain retailers, excluding additional units being given away separately by Sprint, Target, Costco, and Best Buy. A Samsung representative called the 300,000 figure “grossly understates” the number of units being given away. The article has been updated to reflect this information.
As we reported the news this weekend that Samsung would be handing out free Gear VR headsets with S7 and S7 Edge pre-orders occurring between February 23rd through March 18, we noticed the dubious “while supplies last” clause attached to the claim. Luckily, it looks like the company has an impressive stock to hand out, up to 300,000 units coming directly from Samsung and several partners in the US alone, excluding additional stock being given away by several other major retailers.
Eagle-eyed reader Mike Lamb tracked down the official rules of the US giveaway which indicates up to 300,000 Gear VR units could be given away by Samsung directly in the US alone. We haven’t been able to track down specific figures for other territories, but a Samsung representative confirmed other regions have their own additional stock to give away.
Folks in the US can use this page to get a better understanding of how to redeem their headset depending upon where they buy. The promotion starts today, you can find pre-order availability in the US on Samsung’s website.
The headset being given away is the most current model (SM-R322), released in late 2015. Samsung built the S7 and S7 Edge to be backwards compatible with the headset, which now supports six Samsung smartphones (read more about Gear VR models and phone compatibility here).
On stage at Samsung’s ‘Unpacked’ event in Barcelona this weekend, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg joined the event to prop up the partnership between the companies (with FB-child company Oculus playing a major role in the Gear VR).
“Millions of people will get their hands on Gear VR this year,” he said, and further hailed Samsung as “the only company that can manufacture—at scale—the OLED displays needed for great VR.”
Zuckerberg shared some interesting stats about the gear VR platform, saying that 1 million hours of video have been watched inside the headset, and that 200 games and apps are now available through the device’s store.
In addition to the free Gear VR headset with S7 pre-orders, Oculus is including free game bundles with six games each as part of the package (three unique bundles depending upon where you pre-order your S7).