December 9, 2023

Virtual Reality Gaming

Speaker 1: Our favorite headset has been the MedQuest two for years. Now there’s an update, the MedQuest three in a year full of VR headsets. How does this new one compare and is it the one to get over the Quest two, here’s what you need to know. So I’ve been using the MedQuest three for about a week so far, and there’s a lot of things that I’m observing. The first thing you need to know is what’s new? Well, there’s a lot of upgrades here. First of all, there’s a new processor, [00:00:30] a Qualcomm Snapdragon XR two Gen two, better graphics, better speed. There’s higher resolution, better lenses. They’re clearer. It’s got a wider field of view. It’s got added cameras here. The controllers are smaller, but what Met is really pushing here is mixed reality. Mixed reality is the ability to blend virtual reality with what your cameras on your headset see in the real world.

Speaker 1: It’s called pass-through Mixed Reality as opposed to when [00:01:00] you wear an AR glasses set up, that allows you to actually see the real world with ghostly AR images overlap, and it’s the type of technology that you’re going to see on the Apple Vision Pro and probably future VR headsets because Qualcomm’s chip is going to be in a lot of others down the line. One fun thing is I can actually show you what mixed reality looks like, thanks to the fact that the Quest three can capture that footage and send it over to the phone app. The Meta Quest three basically gives you the type of experience [00:01:30] with mixed reality. That’s sort of like what magically promised way back, the ability to mesh your room, to scan your environment, and to layer virtual things into it. There are a couple of apps that already do this.

Speaker 1: One is a demo game app that Meta has on the Quest three called First Encounters that allows you to have things crash out of the walls into your room and you’re shooting little creatures and it’s the most wild and fun demo that’s on the headset right now. It’s great, but also it can feel a little [00:02:00] bit gimmicky. The question is, what else are you going to do with it? Well, the Quest Pro met his eye tracking headset that came out last year, also did some mixed reality, but there’s a depth sensing camera here in addition to much improved color cameras that make that mixed reality feel more real met is betting that you’ll care about that, but we need the apps and the games and the experiences that are going to make us feel what that difference is. Right now, week one, I’ve only seen a handful of apps that are using it, not a lot of killer apps.

Speaker 1: I’m really curious [00:02:30] how well it gets introduced on a larger scale across meta’s software platform. How does it differ from the Quest two? Well, this is the thing in good ways and bad ways, it’s basically the same proposition. It runs Quest two apps. It has the same software ecosystem. You can run those games. You have the same type of screen with all of the apps, anything that you’re used to with what VR is on the Quest that’s carrying over into the Quest three, that also kind of makes it feel like an upgraded phone or a tablet.

Speaker 2: So in that sense, [00:03:00] I was expecting maybe a little bit more of a transformed environment. It does start in mixed reality, but Metta did that a little bit before on the Quest two and the Quest Two’s design is kind of similar to the Quest three. Even though it is smaller upfront, it’s got about the same weight. It has a similar type of strap attachment, so it’s elastic straps and you can pop out other types of accessories and add them on if you want, like an elite strap. The controllers are smaller, so [00:03:30] they got rid of that big plastic tracking ring, but the grip and the button placement, everything pretty much is the same otherwise, which is great. If you really like the feel of the Quest two controllers, it still charges with U S B C. It still has a headphone jack and it still puts a little audio into your ear through these speakers that are near your ear that people can hear, but it’s a little bit like it’s intimate.

Speaker 2: The Quest three does not have eye tracking, neither does the Quest two, the Quest Pro does, and Apple’s Vision Pro and the PlayStation VR two do [00:04:00] have eye tracking. Now, it’s not a really big loss right now, but if you’re looking for a way to transform your interactions with vr, it could be a miss down the road because Apple is betting that eye tracking plus hand tracking equals a whole new interface. Meta does have hand tracking that’ll probably get better, but there is no eye tracking, so you may want to still default to those controllers. Battery Life, it’s expected to be about the same, which is about two hours more or less. So for, I found that it’s enough to play for a while in the evening, and then I’m going [00:04:30] to want to look to charge it up. The controllers still use AA batteries much like the Quest two and those had a really good battery life, or you could even put in these fancy contactless batteries for charging.

Speaker 2: But those come with the Quest three charging dock from Meta, which I’m showing off right here, very nice and very expensive. It’s $130. That’s a lot of money. There are a number of accessories that Met is already selling for the Quest three ranging from an elite strap that has a better fit. There’s an elite strap with battery pack, which I didn’t [00:05:00] try. There’s a carrying case. There’s this charge dock. Those are all going to cost you $70 for the case, 130 for the charge dock, $70 for the elite strap, and the base model of the Quest three is $500. If you want to get the one with 512 gigabytes of storage, that’s $650. So if you start buying a lot of accessories, this could be close to a thousand dollars proposition. That’s a lot of money, but you could get in with just the $500 one and charge it up with U S B C and just get some type of a case, maybe a cheaper one. I [00:05:30] would recommend a case and you don’t really need all the other stuff. Let’s take a moment and think about the future. What is going to happen in VR and AR down the road? Well, it’s a big unknown of course, but there are a lot of products coming next year. Those products are going to likely define a new landscape for computing maybe with Apple’s case, certainly floating two D apps and an app ecosystem. Samsung and Google might try

Speaker 3: To do the same. Where does that leave meta? Is it some sort [00:06:00] of advanced computing platform? Well, you already can use this as a monitor for working on your computer just like you can with the Quest two. The resolution on this display is more than good enough for doing work in and even for watching TV shows and floating them in your room with you. It’s not cinema quality in the way that I felt with the Apple Vision Pro, but that’s a $3,500 headset. The interesting thing here is that for $3,000 less, yes, $3,000 less, [00:06:30] you could get a lot of those experiences to play around with for 500 bucks. And Meta also has a number of fitness apps, that type of full motion activity stuff, boxing or Beat Saber, which has not been updated for mixed reality yet. Those things are what make the Quest a really interesting proposition compared to PlayStation VR two or even Apple Vision Pro down the road in 2020.

Speaker 3: It was a no-brainer upgrade. The Quest two was a better product and it was a hundred dollars less expensive. [00:07:00] Now, the Quest three is a better product all around and will probably be the best VR headset at this price, but it is $200 more. Now, if you have a Quest two right now, I think you’re okay waiting because a lot of the apps right now have not been updated, and the Quest three is going to wait for those apps, and if not a lot of people own it yet, maybe developers are not going to all jump on board unless Meta pushes them, but next year, six months down the road, it could all change. The Quest has evolved over time. Adding hand tracking, [00:07:30] adding all sorts of experimental features Met is going to be adding AI features on board this next year. So this could really turn into a very different product and at some point the Quest two won’t be supported, and this will be the product, this $500 device.

Speaker 3: It’s remarkable what it includes on it and all the features and the resolution and everything else that makes it a really, really cool product. Maybe not a must have upgrade yet, but I bet by the time all these headsets hit next year, this will still be the most affordable one, and that makes it a really interesting device, [00:08:00] game console, whatever else you want it to be to explore AR and VR as a game console, it’s definitely iterative, but I think it’s going to become one of the best gaming VR experiences that’s around. Oh, and by the way, did I mention it also works with your pc? So for that alone and for its high resolution, it could be an excellent pick. So here are things I like and dislike about the Quest three. What I like, the graphics are better. The display and the lenses are a lot better and it can do mixed reality, which is a really cool [00:08:30] trick. What I don’t like, it’s $200 more expensive. The battery life has not changed and Meta hasn’t figured out any other way that this will work with apps and other software ecosystems that’s any different than the way Quest already did. We’re going to keep following the Quest three over time and see how it evolves because there’s going to be a lot more stuff down the road that’s going to be really interesting to check out.

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