Recently my partner and I met some friends to enjoy a summer BBQ – making the most of the nice weather while we could. But, as is often the case in the UK, it wasn’t long before the sun was hiding behind the clouds and our outdoor party was raining.
Looking for a way to keep everyone entertained, our host pulled out his parents’ Oculus Quest 2 and we took turns smashing Beat Saber tracks and earning high scores in Resident Evil 4 VR’s The Mercenaries mode. People who didn’t regularly use VR seemed impressed with what the headset could do and wanted to buy one for themselves.
Knowing that I regularly write and use this type of technology, a few of them contacted me with questions about the best VR headsets to choose from – with particular interest in the Quest 2 which they had liked use on the barbecue.
But as I told them and I’m telling you now, now couldn’t be a worse time to buy an Oculus Quest 2.
More expensive than ever
As you may have heard, Meta recently decided to increase the price of its very popular VR headset. The 128GB storage model is now $400 / £400 / AU$630 (was $299 / £299 / AU$479) and the 256GB version is $500 / £500 / AU$790 (was $399). $ / £399 / AU$639).
We were hoping Meta could reinstate the 64GB version of the headset it phased out in July 2021, introducing it to fill the now empty slot. However, that doesn’t seem to be the plan at the moment.
This means that for the first time ever, you can’t buy a new Oculus Quest 2 for less than $400 / £400 / AU$630.
The price increase is likely to last for a while – and there are very few Oculus Quest 2 deals – so why is it worse to buy a Quest 2 today than in a few weeks or months?
Something old? Something new!
Well, for starters, we’re not far off from seeing Meta and its rivals launching new VR headsets. Mark Zuckerberg (CEO of Meta) has been teasing Project Cambria for almost a year and has often promised that it will launch in 2022 – he only has a few months left to deliver on that promise. Sony is also teasing the launch of its PlayStation VR 2 headset, and while it looks likely to drop in 2023, we could see it launch before December this year.
Finally, we have the Pico 4 headphones from ByteDance. The recently leaked VR device will be the company’s first to launch in the US. If the price and features are right, we could be looking at a strong rival for the better-known names in the VR space.
These headsets could launch for less than the Oculus Quest 2 or offer better specs for the same price, and with Project Cambria in the wild, Meta could decide to drop the price of its older Quest 2 model. However, this The latter idea seems unlikely as it would alienate any consumers who paid for the Quest 2 during this high-priced period.
That doesn’t mean the Quest 2 probably won’t see a price drop at all in 2022, but we’ll have to bide our time.
Whether it’s during Black Friday or an indie event hosted by a local store, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Quest 2 went on sale.
The Oculus Quest 2 has rarely been discounted – you’re more likely to get it with discounted accessories. One of the only proper offers we saw on this was during Amazon Prime Day 2022, when US customers could get a $50 gift card with their purchase.
However, with the Quest 2 now at an all-time low, I think there’s a chance Meta’s headset will get a limited-time discount that’s at least as good as the free $50 Amazon gift card. This is especially possible during Black Friday, as it would make this must-have gadget an even more appealing gift to pick up and place under the Christmas tree.
So with all of that in mind, I recommend against buying an Oculus Quest 2 if you can.
If you’re desperate to play the best Oculus Quest 2 games and the best VR games around, you probably won’t completely regret buying one now. But with new headsets likely to drop in the near future and discounts a very real possibility, you could be kicking yourself in a few months.