What you need to know
- Quest v40 is introducing a number of new security tools, including locking specific apps behind a passcode and encrypting Messenger chats.
- It also adds new supported keyboards and more accessible audio customization.
- The milestone update will be rolling out slowly over the next few weeks.
- This update begins Meta's push for better parental controls on Oculus Quest headsets.
Meta revealed the suite of updates that will be coming to the Oculus Quest in v40; the next benchmark update for its popular line of cordless headsets. As with previous versions, the updates will be slowly introduced over the next few weeks, "to ensure there are no surprises."
In the Oculus blog post detailing the news on Monday, it said it would add a number of useful security tools to its headsets, including app-specific security locks, new secure payment options in-headset, and end-to-end encryption to ensure greater privacy in one-on-one Messenger chats and calls.
App Lock allows you to add a combination lock to any individual app. It's a great DIY parental control option to keep younger players from jumping into some of the Quest's more graphic experiences, like The Walking Dead: Saints and Sinners.
This is the first of the new Quest parental controls announced back in March designed to better monitor and restrict 13-17-year-old users' activities and purchases. It also said it would create a Parent Dashboard to supervise kids' play stats and restrict M-rated purchases without parental approval in May, but that isn't part of the Oculus v40 update.
V40 will also allow Quest users to adjust the speaker balance from left to right, which ensures that hearing-impaired users can tailor the Quest 2's immersive audio capabilities to better suit their individual needs. Or you can toggle on mono audio, which makes both speakers produce the same audio, rather than emitting different sounds based on where the user is in a virtual environment. Either option will make audio more accessible to those with disabilities.
The update also widens the Quest and Quest 2's keyboard support. In the last year or so, Meta's only added a small handful of Bluetooth keyboards to the Quest's repertoire. V40 brings three new keyboards to the table; Apple's Magic Keyboard with numeric keypad, the Logitech's K375s, and Logitech MX Keys.
This update more than doubles the number of supported keyboards on Quest, as Meta doubles down on making its Quest headsets more productivity-focused ahead of the upcoming Project Cambria release. As the tech conglomerate plans to venture further into the virtual office space through mixed reality, we're sure to see more and more keyboards being brought into the fold in v41 and beyond.
Otherwise, parents who use multiple accounts and app sharing to let their kids play Quest games can now buy their favorite bloody shooters or intense horror games without fear of their kids getting access.
The Quest 2 offers the ideal combination of seamless VR and high-quality exclusives to make a case for itself as the definitive VR experience.
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Charlie's a freelance contributor at Android Central from Milwaukee, WI.