Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg revealed at F8 Conference the new Oculus Quest will begin shipping this month (May 2019). We announced shortly afterwards InstaVR publishing compatibility with the headset, including use of the Touch Controllers.
There’s been tremendous excitement for the Quest since then, with numerous media outlets already giving it glowing reviews. Many companies and VR fans have already placed their pre-orders for the headset.
But for those newer to VR — or that are currently displaying their apps on Oculus Go or Samsung Gear VR headsets — the question is: Should you invest the $399 per Oculus Quest to help you achieve your business goals? The answer for many businesses is “yes.”
We previously reviewed the specs of the Quest headset when it was first announced. It is definitely a good fit for a subset of users that need a more powerful, mobile, standalone headset. This is particularly true for enterprise use cases — employee training, sales/marketing presentations, and healthcare/engineering/BIM.
We wanted to delve a little deeper though into the three main features of the headset that will drive adoption. If you need any of these three features, you’ll likely want to invest in the Quest. Let us know if you have any questions on the headset and we look forward to seeing your published apps in a couple weeks!
1. If you need 6 Degrees of Freedom (6 DoF), with inside-out tracking, in a mobile standalone headset…
The first major differentiator you’ll notice about the Quest vs. the Oculus Go/Samsung Gear VR is that it utilizes 6 Degrees of Freedom (6 DoF) tracking. By comparison, the Oculus Go only allows for 3 Degrees of Freedom (3 DoF).
What are Degrees of Freedom? They’re the motion direction you can go in that is recognized by the headset, and conveyed properly in the headset. With the Oculus Quest, four cameras that reside within the headset enable positional tracking. For a more complete understanding of that feature, read this informative overview.
The Oculus Go does standard 360-degree images and video well. So if you’ve recorded a simple 360 video you’d like to use for a sales presentation, where the viewer can sit in a chair and move their head up/down/left/right, then you’re probably fine using the Go.
But clients are making more and more complex applications. One where orientation in a scene is important. Where you can walk around objects and see them from multiple angles.
That is where the 6 DoF of the Oculus Quest becomes necessary. It more accurately represents true movement, and allows for greater scene activity. You can, for instance, walk around a virtual car, and the Quest will use sensors in the headset to more accurately convey your position within the virtual scene.
Importantly, early reports on the inside-out tracking have been strong. There’s always a fear the positional tracking will have limited range or have interruption issues — but most reviews we’ve read, in addition to our own work with the Quest, suggest the inside-out tracking is top notch for a mobile headset.
2. If You Want Powerful Touch Controller Interactivity…
Some people prefer gaze navigation. Others like the single-touch option of the Oculus Go & Samsung Gear VR controllers. But for users that want maximum interactivity — the ones serious about VR that are using InstaVR Enterprise + Oculus Quests — a powerful hand controller is essential. And Oculus Quest provides two Touch controllers that have tested very well so far.
As you can see from our screenshot below, you’ll be able to more closely mimic immersion into a virtual world. Those two virtual hands can do so much more than with a single-click controller. In the case of the below scene, you can move the chair to a new location using the Touch controllers. This level of motion with hand controllers provides a greater level of interactivity, and consequently, a more immersive and memorable VR experience.
For instance, a virtual surgeon application will more closely approximate your real hand movements, allowing for a more realistic and thorough training experience. The Touch Controllers + 6 Degrees of Freedom tracking provider Oculus Quest users a huge leap forward over the more basic 360 video watching possible with Oculus Go & Samsung Gear VR.
3. If You Want Amazing Visuals, Including 1,440 x 1,600 Resolution Per Eye…
The Oculus Quest has dual OLED displays that provide 1,440 x 1,600 resolution each lens. Very impressive for a mobile headset, especially when you realize the Oculus Rift only supplies 1,080 x 1,200. The Field of View is roughly the same as the Oculus Go (~ 100 degrees), which is fine for most users.
Early reviews, and our own experience, is that the visual quality is equal to or even better than the Oculus Rift. This is pretty amazing for a mobile headset not tethered to a high-powered computer and graphics card. We can thank the Qualcomm Snapdragon processor for that!
Why do visuals matter so much for InstaVR users?
As part of our announcement on compatibility with Quest, we also announced standard Enterprise client ability to ingest 3D CGI files such as FDX, OBJ, and VRML. This is something we’ve previously been able to do, but hadn’t productized for end users — reserving the capability for certain top-level clients. But now anyone with an InstaVR Enteprise subscription can create immersive VR with these file types.
There is a high level of visual complexity involved in 360 3D CGI high resolution files. The Quest is a near perfect headset for viewing them, especially given the headset’s price point. So far, we haven’t experienced any lag or pixel distortions in our testing. The level of immersion truly is extraordinary, perfect for our clients that are capable of creating 360 3D CGI renders and videos.
As we said in our initial impressions of the Quest last year, the headset is the perfect fit for a certain subset of users with particular needs. Clients serious about VR — be it Fortune 500 members, VR agencies who use the technology daily, or forward-thinking companies distributing VR to hundreds or thousands of employees — will want to take a serious look at the Oculus Quest.
More and more companies are seeing the importance of using VR in their enterprises. As such, they’re migrating from using standard 2D or 3D image/video to immersive, interactive 3D 360 CGI environments. Authoring in InstaVR Enterprise and deploying to Oculus Quest provides one of the most impactful ways to utilize VR in your organization. We’re looking forward to helping you create amazing VR experiences!
*Note: Publishing 360 3D CGI files such as VRML, STL, and FDX to Oculus Quest and Oculus Rift S headsets requires an InstaVR Enterprise subscription. To learn more about InstaVR Enterprise, contact our sales team via email: contact at instavr.co