The Facebook Connect 2021 event is over, but the big changes are still happening. The Oculus brand name is being retired to bring things in line with Facebook’s new name — and its flagship headset will soon be called the “Meta Quest.”
Things have been going well for the Oculus Quest 2 headset in recent months — it’s sold more than any other Oculus headset to date in its first six months alone. Those sales will surely be augmented thanks to today’s surprise announcement of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas coming to the Oculus Quest 2 headset.
The Oculus brand as a whole, however, has had some shakeups. Facebook officially killed off the Oculus Rift line of products late last year. Now, it’s also going to be retiring the company’s name and branding to bring it in line with Facebook’s new name and branding change.
‘Meta Quest’ Rebrand Was a ‘Very Difficult Decision,’ Meta Exec Says
The announcement of the Meta Quest name change was made in a lengthy Facebook post by the company’s incoming Chief Technology Officer Andrew “Boz” Bosworth.
“VR will be the most immersive way for people to access the metaverse and as we look toward our goal of bringing 1B people into VR, we want to make it clear that Quest is a Meta product,” read the Facebook post from Andrew Bosworth (via Engadget). “For this reason, we’re simplifying our brand architecture and shifting away from the Oculus brand. Starting in early 2022, you’ll start to see the shift from Oculus Quest from Facebook to Meta Quest and Oculus App to Meta Quest App over time.”
“We all have a strong attachment to the Oculus brand, and this was a very difficult decision to make,” he continued. “While we’re retiring the name, I can assure you that the original Oculus vision remains deeply embedded in how Meta will continue to drive mass adoption for VR today.”
That’s not the only big change that’s coming to the Quest 2 headset, either. Earlier today, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that the requirement for a personal Facebook account was going to be relaxed, potentially allowing you to use a FB for Workplaces account instead.
“We’re working on making it so you can log in to Quest with an account other than your personal Facebook account,” Zuckerberg said. “We’re starting to test support for work accounts soon and we’re working on making a broader shift here over the next year. I know this is a big deal for a lot of people — not everyone wants their social media profile linked to all these other experiences and I get that, especially as the Metaverse expands.”
Don’t get too excited, now — Zuckerberg’s messaging was somewhat vague. Axio Gaming’s Stephen Totilo asked Facebook PR for clarification and got nowhere, so it’s unclear what exactly this change will mean. Additionally, Ars Technica’s Tech Culture Editor Sam Machkovech noted a key fact in a ResetEra post.
“Until they clarify, a massive warning: FB For Workplaces is a FB-controlled login system,” Machkovech said in a comment on ResetEra. “Requires [personally-identifying ]confirmation before FB greenlights each account. If that’s what this is, it’s nowhere near the same as a wholly decoupled and anonymized login system.”
Whatever these account changes may be, it’s clear that the Oculus branding is going the way of the dodo. The same great headset will stick around (albeit with the new Meta Quest name) as part of Meta’s efforts to bring more people into virtual reality.