Facebook says that the Oculus Rift S headphones “in principle” will not be replenished, as they disappear from store shelves, marking the end of the life of the virtual reality system. Like UploadVR reported yesterday, Facebook confirmed that “generally speaking, since the channels are sold in stock, they will not be populated up front.” Computer-connected headphones are not available in the Oculus store and are not available on retail platforms such as Amazon and Walmart in the United States, with the exception of third-party vendors.
Facebook announced last year that it would discontinue the Oculus Rift S in 2021
According to some reports, this strategy is a significant departure from Oculus’ earlier plans. Oculus co-founder Brendan Iribe left the company in 2018, reportedly after Facebook canceled a higher-end Rift 2 headset. The late Oculus founder Palmer Lucky hinted at this rumor on Twitter today, saying he “imagines a world where the Rift 2 was not canceled shortly before it went into production and then canceled again in favor of much lower spec specifications. Lenovo rebadge. (Oculus Rift S is manufactured in partnership with Lenovo.)
However, the move to stand-alone design has obviously worked well for Facebook so far. Facebook says last year’s Oculus Quest 2 surpassed all previous Oculus headphones combined. The device has established Facebook as the dominant VR headset company at the cost of giving up VR based PCs to high-end competitors, including Valve, HTC and HP. And Facebook said it was continuing the Quest line for the near future – with CEO Mark Zuckerberg saying it was already imagining the Quest 3 and 4 headphones.