Facebook unveils the Oculus Quest 2 with the Snapdragon XR2, 90Hz refresh rate for $299

Facebook unveils the Oculus Quest 2 with the Snapdragon XR2, 90Hz refresh rate for $299

Facebook-owned Oculus on Wednesday officially introduced the Quest 2, the company’s second-generation standalone virtual reality headset. It’s launching October 13 at a starting price of $299 for the base model—that’s $100 less than the original Quest. Interested buyers can pre-order the Oculus Quest 2 beginning today.

Today’s announcement is more of a formality rather than a surprise, because just this week, promo videos detailing the Quest 2 leaked out. As those videos revealed, the Quest 2 will be a much more powerful VR headset compared to the original, coming equipped with the Qualcomm Snapdragon XR2 platform. This platform was built specifically for AR and VR hardware and promises to offer much better performance.

The Oculus Quest 2 also features 6GB of RAM, an upgrade from the Quest’s 4GB, and a display that offers 1832 x 1920 pixels per eye, which is a 50% increase in resolution over the original Quest. The LCD also supports refresh rates up to 90Hz, though at launch, the refresh rate will be set at 72Hz. Oculus said it’ll open up 90Hz to all developers soon after launch.

As the leaked videos mentioned, the Quest 2 is making some crucial design changes. The new headset is slimmer and lighter than the original Quest — Oculus said it made a 10% reduction in weight. The headset also features a soft-touch strap and a built-in adjustable interpupillary adjustment mechanism with three settings.

Speaking of comfort, the Oculus 2 controllers, which still require AA batteries, offer improved ergonomics and more efficient tracking. Because of these improvements, Oculus claims the controllers can last up to four times longer than the Quest’s touch controllers, which is a significant improvement.

The Quest 2 supports a new line of optional accessories, too, including customizable head straps and facial interface add-ons. One of the accessories, called Elite Strap, offers more battery life and “increased balance and ergonomics.” There’s also a Fit Pack, which features swappable facial interfaces to fit wider or narrower faces.

The Quest 2 begins a new era for Oculus. The company said its focus is on standalone VR headsets moving forward, which means it’ll no longer pursue PC-only hardware. That means sales of the Rift S will end in 2021, although the Rift Platform will stick around into the future.

With the Rift S headed to the grave, Oculus will offer a $79 Link USB-C cable that’s compatible with the Oculus Quest 2. This will allow the new VR headset to plug into a computer and access the Rift library, which will feature upcoming games like Medal of Honor: Above and Beyond.

Controversially, the Quest 2 will require new users to have a Facebook sign-in, so you’ll have to sign up for an account if you don’t already have one.

The Oculus Quest 2 is being offered with 64GB of storage for the base model, which retails for $299. There’s also a model with 256GB of storage, but that costs $399. Preorders are available now, with a launch set for October 13 in 22 countries across the world.

    Oculus Quest 2 | $299
    The Oculus Quest 2 is Facebook's latest standalone virtual reality headset. It's also the first commercial VR headset with Qualcomm's Snapdragon XR2 platform, designed specifically for VR.

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Brandon Russell
Brandon Russell

Brandon's love of technology can be traced back to his childhood, when he would obsessively watch Back to the Future. Since then he's followed the industry and its many innovations, from handheld consoles to powerful smartphones. He's still waiting on a hoverboard.