If you plan on ever deleting Facebook, don’t buy an Oculus VR headset
This is so gross.
When Facebook bought Oculus way back in 2014, Oculus fans and tech media alike worried about the future. A future of VR, controlled by Facebook and their relentless drive for engagement. Now that feared future is here, and while it’s not quite as bad as the one envisioned in Ready, Player One, it’s still pretty bad. See, to use the latest Oculus headset, the Quest 2, you have to sign in with a Facebook account.
That’s a problem, not just because of Facebook’s iffy track record on content moderation that’s led to it becoming the platform of choice for sharing misinformation. No, it’s also bad for Oculus fans, some of which found themselves locked out of their shiny new headsets, making their existing Oculus games also worthless.
Important VR PSA: 👉 Deactivating your Facebook profile disables your Oculus Profile.
👉 Deleting your Facebook account takes away all your games, purchases, and progress.
Source: Eli Schwartz pic.twitter.com/dSJIcIf0ki
— Cix (@CixLiv) October 22, 2020
You won’t even be able to escape this dystopian future either, with Facebook signaling that when they phase Oculus-only accounts out in 2023, you’ll have to update to Facebook login, or presumably lose access to your games and other purchased experiences. Yikes.
Now, if there was any competition in the consumer VR space, this wouldn’t be as much of a problem. Consumers could just vote with their wallets, in true capitalist style, and jump ship to another headset brand. That’s impossible, as Facebook sells their Oculus headsets at what could only be described as a loss leader, to get people hooked onto the platform. Facebook takes this monopolistic stance further, with a clause buried in the terms and conditions that is aimed at stopping you from joining a class action suit against Facebook’s Oculus.
Is this anti-competitive behavior? The House seems to think so, with a recent report that seems to suggest Congress should treat any terms and conditions like Facebook’s need to have a Facebook account to access Oculus hardware as anti-competitive. We’ll have to wait to see if anything actually gets done about this. Until then, Oculus support does say they will refund orders returned within 30 days of shipping.
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