Oculus co-founder Palmer Luckey, who was booted out of Facebook in early 2017 is now offering a $10,000 ($5,000 on top of Robert Long’s reward) reward for an Oculus Quest 2 jailbreak that will enable users to use the headset without having to log in with their real Facebook accounts.

Luckey has previously stated that he felt “hate and rage” when he was fired by Facebook and frequently throws some jabs at the former employer on Twitter.

In a tweet, Luckey has stated that he is willing to double $5,000 pledge by Robert Long for a Quest 2 jailbreak that would free the headset from a compulsory Facebook log in.

Facebook’s new Oculus Quest 2 virtual reality headsets offer impeccable value for money and industry-leading specifications. They probably offer one of the best price-performance ratio from a cost perspective.

However, privacy has been a major bone of contention. Facebook captures and transmits the user data purely through the hardware device. This means that unlike Facebook or Instagram, for example, the Quest 2 user is not able to regulate the data flow through their own usage behavior. If you intend to use the Facebook VR hardware sensibly, then the data will inevitably flow as requested by Facebook.

The first person to float an offer for a Quest jailbreak was Robert Long, formerly of Altspace VR and now working with Mozilla WebXR. He has been so bothered by Facebook’s Quest privacy policy that he gave a reward for anyone would hack (via a so-called jailbreak) Quest 2 and get rid of the constraint that requires users to log in with their Facebook accounts. He is offering $5,000 for anyone who would accomplish that.

On noticing Long’s tweet, the Oculus co-founder shared the tweet and doubled the offer. That means that if you free Quest from Facebook, you’d get a total of $10,000: $5,000 from Long and $5,000 from Luckey. Luckey has even tried to included Minecraft inventor Markus Persson and Epic boss Tim Sweeney in the offer by tagging them in the tweet: –

However, such a hack would likely draw a major legal backlash from Facebook and might not be a risk worth taking for $10,000. Besides, due to the relatively tiny VR developer community, the number of potential hackers is quite limited so there aren’t likely to be any takers.

Is a Quest Hack even Possible?

Facebook’s Virtual Reality headsets are based on Google’s open-source Android OS. It is therefore technically possible to bypass Facebook’s Oculus ecosystem and instead operate the headsets using an alternative operating system and even stores. At least this is possible with smartphones.

Besides, while such a jalilbreak might appeal to niche audiences that don’t find the technical effort and possible Facebook sanctions daunting, it is not an attractive proposition for the average mainstream user who will end up losing direct access to the Oculus app ecosystem.

This is not the first time that Long has submitting an Oculus jailbreak offer. He successfully did so for the first-generation Quest headsets even though that device did not force users to have a Facebook account. It remains to be seen whether this latest offer might arouse some interest.

The now market dominant Facebook has had a love-hate relationship with the Virtual Reality industry, primarily regarding its advertising-based model and questionable privacy practices. Facebook subsidizes its VR ecosystem using an ad-based model and this ad model is anchored on collecting a lot of data about users. In spite of the widespread concerns, the general relationship status between Facebook and the VR industry is a ‘complicated’ one as it is Facebook’s billions and commitment to VR which has pushed the industry to the current level.

Even as it invests in the industry, Facebook has bludgeoned its way into a market-dominant position in the VR industry and the tech giant sees this as granting it considerable freedom in defining the terms of use for both consumers and developers.

It will be interesting to see how this ‘relationship status’ will pan out in the coming years. The status quo is likely to obtain for the foreseeable future. The VR headset ecosystem without a connected data business model is still not a financially attractive prospect in the short to medium term. VR is yet to fully break into the mainstream market.

http://virtualrealitytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/Oculus-Quest-2-600x337.jpghttp://virtualrealitytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/Oculus-Quest-2-150x90.jpgSam OchanjiHardwareOculus Quest 2TechnologyVR HeadsetsOculus co-founder Palmer Luckey, who was booted out of Facebook in early 2017 is now offering a $10,000 ($5,000 on top of Robert Long's reward) reward for an Oculus Quest 2 jailbreak that will enable users to use the headset without having to log in with their real Facebook...VR, Oculus Rift, and HTC Vive News - Cryptocurrency, Adult, Sex, Porn, XXX