Facebook’s Oculus Quest is back in stock in most regions, with a current shipping estimate of ‘by May 27’ for buyers in North America.
UK & Ireland based prospective VR users are still unable to order Quest, with the product simply showing as unavailable on the Oculus website. By contrast, for mainland Europe, Quests should ship by the weekend, as should those ordered to Australia or New Zealand.
Oculus Quest is the first room scale standalone VR headset with tracked controllers sold to consumers. That means it doesn’t require a gaming PC or PS4 to work and it can still play games like Beat Saber, Superhot VR, and VRChat.
Quest launched almost one year ago on May 21. For much of its lifetime, Quest has been in limited availability. During the holiday season this was seemingly due to higher than expected demand. Before stock ever fully returned, manufacturing was significantly impacted by the ongoing coronavirus global pandemic.
Since launch, Facebook has released a number of significant system software updates. The Touch controller tracking went from mediocre to great, camera passthrough was upgraded to stereo, PC VR capability was added via USB cable, basic multitasking capabilities are emerging, and most impressively of all, hands can now be tracked without controllers (though this is far from perfect).
Popular PC VR games continue to be ported to Quest — a difficult task given its relatively limited computing power. This year, the headset is slated to get top competitive multiplayer titles Echo Arena and Onward, as well as physics-heavy blockbuster The Walking Dead: Saints and Sinners. However, top titles like Half-Life: Alyx and Asgard’s Wrath can’t be ported, meaning they can only be played with a gaming PC.
Throughout March and April factories all over China reportedly started to come back online. With much of the developed world at home, VR is needed now more than ever. If Quest production can stay on track it may end up as one of 2020’s hit products, helping expand the virtual reality market.