When it comes to virtual reality, the Oculus Quest 2 is widely regarded as the GOAT – or at least the best value for money.
The 64GB version will set you back $479, while the 256GB version costs $639. Sure, it’s not cheap, but if we’re talking value for money, it’s a pretty good deal. However, there’s a catch.
You can’t use the Oculus Quest without selling your soul (or at least your data) to Facebook. That’s the real kicker.
For most of us, Facebook already has our data. And apart from some weirdly specific sponsored ads that remind you that Mark Zuckerberg is always listening to you, it doesn’t really feel like that big of a deal.
For what it’s worth, Oculus doesn’t even try to hide the fact that Facebook collects your data. You can read its entire data collection policy here.
And perhaps that’s why the Oculus Quest 2 is so cheap (comparatively speaking), because your data is part of the deal.
Don’t believe me? Let me introduce you to a little thing called Oculus for Business – aka the only way to use the Oculus Quest 2 without a Facebook account.
For $US799 plus an annual fee of $US180, you can get your hands on the business version of the Oculus Quest 2.
It’s essentially the exact same device, except it comes with an extended 24-month warranty and doesn’t require a Facebook log-in.
Sure, there are some added features like business support and the extended warranty, but when you look at the stark price difference, it seems pretty clear that you’re paying for the perk of not having your data released to Facebook.
But if you’re already an avid Facebook and Instagram user, what more can they extract from your Oculus Quest usage? Well, it turns out… a lot.
According to the Supplemental Oculus Data Policy (aka everything on top of Facebook’s own), your physical features, interactions and movement data are all collected during use.
This information includes your estimated hand size and dimensions, voice interactions and audio content you create, and physical movements.
All of this information is then passed on to “relevant companies.”
Is the perk of Zuck-free VR gaming worth $US799 plus a hefty annual fee? Probably not. But it’s interesting to see how valuable your data actually is to Facebook to begin with.
As a certified cheapskate, Zuckerberg can know how big my hands are if it saves me a buck.
Despite this, Oculus doesn’t recommend buying the Oculus for Business headset for personal use, noting that it won’t serve the same purpose as a gaming device.
“The Oculus for Business headset is an enterprise device, meaning it does not offer the same experience as the consumer headset because it runs on a specific and tailored software platform for businesses. For example, someone using an Oculus for Business headset cannot access apps/games on the Oculus Store, nor use typical features that are built-in to the consumer headset such as Oculus Home, avatars, social sharing, etc,” Oculus told Gizmodo Australia.
“The Oculus for Business enterprise SKU offers specific benefits for businesses such as centralized device management, bulk provisioning, enterprise-grade security and support, extended warranty, and more, which is why it’s sold for a higher price point.”