Facebook – sorry, “Meta” – has used the week of its much-derided rebranding exercise to quietly retire Oculus for Business.
Oculus for Business was officially launched just two years ago, but in a blog post this week, the social media empire of dubious repute announced that the business-only products were to be discontinued. Companies desperate for VR would be given the option of using the Quest 2 consumer product, in addition to a new business platform.
Launched to “provide a suite of tools designed to help companies reshape the way they do business through the power of VR,” Oculus for Business has evidently not done that.
“As we pivot to building multipurpose devices, we’re making changes to our current offerings,” the blog reads.
As such, the existing Oculus for Business VR headset will be available until 31 December while Version 29 will be the final Oculus for Business OS release.
Facebook said it would continue to provide enterprise-level support and warranties for Oculus for Business – including access to security and vulnerability patches, and a rapid headset replacement deal.
Renewable Subscription Periods for Enterprise Support will no longer be available although there will be no change to the Limited Warranty, the blog assured customers.
Research suggests the global market for VR hardware and software could be $57.55 billion by 2027 – up from $3.1 billion in 2019. Sectors including automotive, healthcare, manufacturing, and entertainment industry are driving growth, according to Fortune Business Insights.
Accountancy and consultancy firm PwC has predicted that nearly 23.5 million workers worldwide will be using AR and VR in their jobs by 2030.
But since there are around three billion people in work worldwide, that’s a small fraction of the labour force.
Still, The Social Network™ remains intent on grabbing a significant slice of this virtual pie as it reconfigures its products and services for business.
Instead of Oculus, the branding will be Quest for Business. The first closed, experimental beta of QfB is set to start later this year. An open beta is expected to follow in 2022, with general availability in 2023.
“Once feature complete, we believe Quest for Business will provide more flexibility and richer experiences for our current Oculus for Business customers,” said the artist formerly known as Facebook.
Now we can only hope for a quiet real space where we can escape from all this hideousness. ®