Google & The Guardian Team Up To Make You Feel Like A Newborn

By Holly Brockwell on at

It's not until you grow up that you realise how nice it must be to be a baby. You get carried everywhere, fed and cuddled, everything's done for you, and your only jobs are to eat and sleep.

If you'd like to experience that life again, the new mobile VR experience from The Guardian is here to help. Called First Impressions, it's free on Google's Daydream platform, and allows you to step into the tiny shoes of a baby in its first six months of life.

It's quite a surreal experience, starting off with limited vision and focus, eventually becoming sharper and more colourful. The 360 trailer gives you a decent idea of what to expect:

As you might expect, there's a deeper meaning, discussing childhood neglect and the lifelong impact it can have. It's voiced by Charles Nelson PhD, professor of paediatrics at Harvard. He comments:

"First Impressions has much to commend it for anyone interested in infant development.  The ability to explore the world through the eyes of a baby offers an unprecedented opportunity to really understand how they see and experience the world."

Francesca Panetta, executive editor, virtual reality at the Guardian adds:
"First Impressions is a beautiful portrayal of the first six months of life and gives viewers a real insight into a period of crucial development which we have all experienced but aren’t able to recall. It’s another example of the Guardian’s innovative storytelling through VR, using this technology as a tool to bring new experiences to life for viewers."

This is one of six "editorially independent virtual reality films" the Guardian will be launching on Daydream, and joins other VR experiences the paper has produced, including an expedition into London's sewers and an unpleasant taste of solitary confinement.

You can try them out here.

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