Meta is making a giant mistake by rebranding Oculus Quest


Opinion: Meta (previously generally known as Fb) just lately introduced on Twitter that it could be renaming its Oculus Quest VR headsets to ‘Meta Quest’.

It isn’t an enormous shock that Meta has performed this, with Mark Zuckerberg emphasizing the corporate’s new concentrate on the Metaverse late final 12 months, however I nonetheless can not help however roll my eyes and think about it a giant mistake. I agree

The Oculus Quest headsets have been extremely standard over time. Qualcomm claims (through The Verge) that Meta has offered 10 million items of the Oculus Quest 2 as of November 2021. To place this in perspective, Microsoft has offered 12 million items These are spectacular gross sales figures – in the identical time-frame because the Xbox Sequence X.

VR headsets are extensively thought of to have distinct enchantment because of the costly worth factors and the necessity for a robust PC. However Oculus has lastly performed an incredible job of creating VR extra accessible and coming into the mass market. Out of the blue, Oculus has develop into a well known model and arguably the largest poster boy for VR ever.

Now that Zuckerberg has canned the Oculus identify, the VR firm is at risk of dropping all of the goodwill it has constructed up over time. When Meta Quest 3 inevitably arrives, what many individuals might not notice is that it’s the successor to Oculus Quest 2.

However the larger threat is the engagement that the newly fashioned Meta model brings. It is no secret that Fb acquired Oculus in 2014, however being a separate model identify for the social media big, it did away with Fb’s controversial conduct.

Forbes requested 2,200 American adults in October 2021 what they thought of Fb. 39% revealed that they seen it negatively, whereas 68% mentioned they weren’t within the metaverse. Whereas I haven’t got any proof to assist this, I do assume folks view the Oculus model much more positively.

There has additionally been a whole lot of backlash from the Oculus neighborhood concerning the gradual integration of Fb options. You at present want a Fb account to make use of the Oculus headset, which acquired a lot detrimental suggestions that Zuckerberg was compelled to announce that he was making a U-turn on that call.

“As we develop into extra targeted on the work, and clearly we’ve heard your suggestions extra extensively, we’re engaged on making it so to be part of Quest with an account apart from your private Fb account. be capable of log in,” Mark Zuckerberg revealed throughout the Fb Join occasion. “We’re beginning testing assist for work accounts quickly, and we’re engaged on making a complete change right here throughout the subsequent 12 months.”

However the greatest subject with the Meta Quest rebranding is that it focuses extra on the metaverse than gaming. And if you happen to’re nonetheless not satisfied, try this submit from the Meta Quest Twitter channel:

“We perceive that our neighborhood will miss the Oculus identify, however change isn’t all the time a nasty factor! We’re trying ahead to fulfilling our ambitions to assist make the Metaverse extra apparent with our new identify!” “

However take one take a look at Oculus Quest’s best-selling ‘experiences’ and you may instantly see why it is problematic.

Of the 30 hottest experiences on Oculus Quest proper now, 19 are VR video games as an alternative of social apps. Solely Rec Room and VR Chat may be thought of a very Metaverse-esque social expertise – maybe PokerStars VR and BigScreen Beta.

Take a look at the best-selling experiences (which embody paid-for downloads) on the Oculus Retailer, and it is much more slanted towards gaming apps over social experiences. Of the 50 apps, 46 are thought of video games – though it is value remembering that many social apps are free to obtain and so will not depend.

So all the info at present suggests is that the Quest headsets are primarily used for gaming, regardless of Zuckerberg’s ambitions to show it right into a social platform much like Fb.

Although I am extremely skeptical in regards to the metaverse as a complete, I can perceive Zuckerberg’s lofty ambitions. However eradicating the Oculus branding appears dangerous to me, probably alienating its rising gaming viewers in favor of the metaverse that most individuals appear unconvinced.

I do not perceive why Zuckerberg retained the Oculus Quest branding whereas nonetheless positioning it underneath the Meta umbrella — in any case, the corporate did not name its VR headset the Fb Quest when it first launched.

And the likes of the PlayStation and Xbox manufacturers are prime examples to point out the advantage of making it a extra gaming-focused identify, quite than simply calling it Sony 5 or Microsoft Sequence X. The PlayStation and Xbox manufacturers now have big and passionate fan bases, which is arguably extra vital to gross sales than the precise {hardware} contained in the console.

The Oculus model was displaying a number of indicators that it was taking place the identical path, however now Zuckerberg has compelled it to concentrate on the metaverse. Solely time will inform whether or not this transfer might be profitable or not, however I am betting it is a catastrophe.





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