Consumer virtual reality systems started in two types. One was powered entirely by a smartphone, with the headset acting as a simple support for the phone and the lens. The other was a heavier headset that, despite its weight, still needed to transfer its work to a powerful PC. The tastes of Google Cardboard have quietly disappeared in the background and now it may be the turn for PC-only virtual reality headsets, starting with the disappearance of Oculus Rift S from leading retail sources.
Launched two years ago, the Oculus Rift S succeeded the first commercial Oculus VR headset, adding “in-out” tracking to eliminate external sensors. Although it naturally has some electronic components, the Rift S cannot function without a connected computer. He was, along with others like the HTC Vive and a handful of Windows Mixed Reality headsets, part of a generation of PC-only systems that may be going out of style when it comes to Oculus and Facebook.
The writing has been on the wall since last year, but the time has finally come. The official channels’ Oculus Rift S stocks have officially run out and, according to the communication with UploadVR, the company will not replenish them going forward. You can still find some units from third-party vendors, but they also won’t last forever.
This practically ends the PC-only phase of Oculus, as it shifts its focus to Oculus Quest 2. Not only is it lighter and more comfortable, but it can also function as a standalone VR system and also as one connected to a PC If HTC and other manufacturers of virtual reality headsets follow the example of Oculus, only time will tell.
That said, Oculus Quest 2 is also facing some resistance and criticism, not because of the hardware itself, but of everything around it. It is the first Oculus headset to require a Facebook account to use, and it exposed other limitations and flaws that Facebook seems to have taken for granted before imposing the requirement.