Meta opens up its Quest headsets to third parties

Meta made a major move in the mixed reality field by announcing that it’s opening up the Quest’s operating system to third-party companies. This means these companies can now create their own headsets. It’s a shift similar to what Android offers, where different companies make various phones, compared to Apple’s closed model where they control both hardware and software.

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The Quest OS is getting rebranded as “Meta Horizon OS,” and two companies have already signed on. ASUS’s Republic of Gamers (ROG) is developing “performance gaming” headsets, while Lenovo is focusing on devices for “productivity, learning, and entertainment.” (Remember, Lenovo also made the Oculus Rift S, which wasn’t well-received.)

In addition to this news, Meta revealed plans for a special limited-edition Xbox-themed Quest headset. (Meta and Microsoft recently teamed up to bring Xbox cloud gaming to the Quest.) Meta is also urging Google to bring their 2D app store, Google Play, over to Meta Horizon OS. To further enrich the Horizon ecosystem, Meta will feature software developed through the Quest App Lab in the Horizon Store. Additionally, the company is working on a new framework to enable mobile developers to create mixed reality apps.

Yuanqing Yang, Lenovo’s Chair & CEO, commented, “Mixed reality is changing how people interact with computers by merging digital experiences with physical spaces to enhance productivity, learning, and entertainment. Building on our successful partnership, Lenovo is combining Meta Horizon OS with our expertise and innovation in personal computing to speed up the adoption of new mixed reality scenarios such as virtual screens, remote presence, content consumption, and immersive training.”