Experience the Arizona border in virtual reality

Experience the Arizona desert all in the palm of your hand.

Immigration is a never-ending issue in the United States. With election season around the corner, politicians will be asked to choose sides and rally voters around polarizing campaigns.

App developers are bringing the border to you in the form of virtual reality story-telling, all in the palm of your hand.

Many in the U.S. hear about undocumented workers crossing the border illegally. But what is it really like to place your life at the mercy of the unforgiving desert terrain?

The team behind Virtual Borders Arizona hope to bring you one step closer to the experience. They debuted a virtual-reality experience on Wednesday to bring the border to smartphones.

The Virtual Borders Arizona app give users an opportunity to see the desert through the eyes of someone crossing it illegally, while encountering some larger-than-life visuals.

"We really want people to reflect and to ask questions rather than accept preconceived dogmas of hatred," said project lead Gabija Grusaite. "With a help of technology, Virtual Borders transports the spectator to the open-air gallery down in the frontier and hopefully gets one to reflect on the temporary nature of the world that we humans create."

Along with developer Ronaldas Buozis and Australian artist Jamie Toll, Grusaite and her team created art installations along the Arizona and Mexico border, 3 hours south of Phoenix.

The app reveals a monstrous bear trap that waits between the border of Mexico and Arizona, a larger-than-life fried egg cooking in the sun and 360-degree views of the beauty and isolation of the desert border.

The app works best with Google Cardboard -- you can find one here -- but can be experienced solely on your phone. It's available for Android and iPhone.


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