Samsung has been working with the biggest name in VR for over two years to bring a bit of the virtual world to its smartphone, and with the Samsung Gear VR, the experience is finally ready for consumers. Anyone who’s followed the development of this and related smartphone VR accessories knows that there’s a lot of exciting stuff going on in this space right now, and that could make choosing where to spend your money a little harder.

To help with that, we’ve put together a short list of what you need to know about the Samsung Gear VR before you consider or dismiss its existence as a physical accessory to take you into the virtual world.

This is very different from Google Cardboard

Gear VR and cardboard

You will often hear people who have never used the Gear VR, or those who have only used it for a moment or two, refer to the Samsung Gear VR as an expensive version of Google Cardboard. While this is true, there are some similarities (namely the part where you put your phone in a little box and look at the lenses from the other side to see beautiful pictures and videos), there is a pretty significant difference in the hardware.

For starters, there’s a microUSB mount in the Gear VR holder that offers some hardware assistance for the Gear VR when you’re looking through those lenses. The additional sensors make head tracking noticeably smoother, which in turn reduces that motion-based disorientation many experience when experiencing virtual reality for the first time on a smartphone. You’ll also find a touchpad on the side of the Gear VR, which offers significantly more control options for navigating not only the Oculus-provided interface, but a significant number of the included apps. For example, games like Gunjack require CCP to do more than just a one-button interface, making it difficult to port to Cardboard. There’s also a back button and a fine focus wheel for proper typing.

Basically, anyone who tells you that Gear VR is an expensive Google Cardboard is wrong and should feel bad.