Credit: Oculus / Facebook
- Facebook has unveiled Oculus Quest 2, its next-generation standalone VR headset.
- It offers a much faster chip, a sharper display, new controllers and a more comfortable design.
- The Quest 2 ships on October 13 for a lower price of $299.
The leaks were on the mark: Facebook has unveiled the Oculus Quest 2, including its release date and price, and it promises to be a big leap over the original. The second-generation standalone, Android-powered virtual reality headset will be available on October 13 starting at $299 for a model with 64GB of storage, a full $100 below the price of the first Quest. Pre-orders are open now.
The Oculus Quest 2 is much more powerful than its predecessor, with a Snapdragon XR2 chip and 6GB of RAM instead of the aging Snapdragon 835 and 4GB of RAM. That should lead to more advanced games and an overall smoother VR experience, although you’ll need to wait for titles that take full advantage of the added power.
You may notice the improved display technology right away, however. The Quest 2 boasts the company’s sharpest visuals yet, with a single LCD screen providing 1,832 x 1,920 resolution for each eye — 50% more pixels than the 1,400 x 1,600 displays in the first Quest. It’s the highest-resolution Oculus headset to date. The Oculus Quest 2 also supports much more natural-feeling 90Hz refresh rates, although it won’t be available upon release. You’ll have to settle for 72Hz at first.
Credit: Oculus / Facebook
It could also be the most comfortable. The Quest 2 is both smaller and 10% lighter than before, with a soft head strap that should make for an easier fit. The Touch controllers are improved, too, with upgraded haptic feedback, better hand tracking, and a thumb rest. Add-ons will help, for that matter. A Fit Pack will adapt to different-sized heads, while a $49 Elite Strap and a $129 Elite Strap with Battery Pack offer both more comfort and longer VR sessions.
Apps will play a key role, too. Oculus Link, which lets you use the Quest as a PC VR headset, will leave beta this fall. Oculus Move is a fitness tracker that will count calories and otherwise measure activity when it arrives later in the year. Facebook Messenger is coming to VR, too. And if you want more top-tier games in VR, Ubisoft is working on Assassin’s Creed and Splinter Cell for Oculus hardware.
Read more: The best mobile VR headsets
The Oculus Quest 2 is arguably the most important VR headset of 2020, delivering meaningful upgrades at a price that makes it much more accessible. However, it’s also crucial to the fate of Facebook’s VR efforts. The social network has revealed that it will stop selling the Oculus Rift S in spring 2021 — this may be Facebook’s main (or only) way to play in VR before long.