Mr. Yohai Baisburd
Dentons US LLP
1301 K Street, NW
Washington DC 20005
RE: The tariff classification of smartphone virtual reality goggles from China
Dear Mr. Baisburd:
In your letter, dated March 29, 2016 submitted on behalf of your client Mattel Import Services Corporation, you requested a tariff classification for the View-Master Virtual Reality Starter Pack (View-Master VR).
The View-Master VR is shaped somewhat like a scuba mask. It is designed to hold a smartphone loaded with appropriate software to allow the user to become immersed in virtual reality when using this device. The View-Master Virtual Reality Starter Pack comes with a wrist strap and a plastic preview reel needed to access content loaded on the smart phone. The essential character of the set is imparted by the View-Master VR device. The View-Master VR is manually held directly in front of the user’s eyes. The device is made of plastic with eye pieces of rubber. The user can watch the smartphone screen through two clear plastic lenses. The View-Master VR is a passive device and contains no electronics. The user’s smartphone is mounted inside the View-Master VR. The device comes with a plastic adapter and foam pads to facilitate the mounting of smaller smartphones within the device. Larger smartphone models fit the device properly on their own without any adapters. Neither the smartphone nor the applications for installation onto the smartphone are included with the View-Master VR.
In your request, you suggest that the “View Master Virtual Reality Starter Pack” is classifiable as a toy. However, it is not a toy principally designed for amusement. While designed for children, the entire virtual reality experience requires the use of a smart-phone to be used in conjunction with the View Master goggles. CBP previously found a product with substantially similar features to be properly classifiable in heading 9004 (NY N255269, dated August 12, 2014). Classification as a toy is not appropriate.
The applicable subheading for the View Master Virtual Reality Starter Pack will be 9004.90.0000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for Spectacles, goggles and the like, corrective, protective or other: Other. The rate of duty will be 2.5 percent ad valorem.
Duty rates are provided for your convenience and are subject to change. The text of the most recent HTSUS and the accompanying duty rates are provided on World Wide Web at https://hts.usitc.gov/current.
This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177).
A copy of the ruling or the control number indicated above should be provided with the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If you have any questions regarding the ruling, contact National Import Specialist Barbara Kiefer at [email protected].
National Commodity Specialist Division