Oculus Quest Firmware Update Brings Stereo Passthrough+, Go-apps, 3-DoF Mode and More
Oculus has rolled out a major firmware update 9.0 to Quest users. The new update adds lots of new features and improvements.
The most important change with the update is the fact Oculus Quest now supports stereo passthrough+ which was previously only on the Oculus Rift S. There is also support for the 3DoF mode as well as support for several Oculus Go apps.
The new firmware update will also allow for future updates to be forced manually from the Oculus Quest settings while inside virtual reality environment.
The Oculus Quest headset is the first standalone room-scale VR headset in the market that is designed with dual 6DoF hand controllers. As a result, the headset can function without a gaming PC or console. It is designed with a smartphone chip that provides the processing function, generating the virtual environment that the user sees when they put on the headset.
We already known the passthrough+ feature from Oculus Rift S. During Oculus Quest setup, the user will see a black and white view of the real world outside the VR environment. This allows the user to set up the Guardian boundaries within which they will have the VR experience. Whenever a user steps outside the Guardian boundaries, they will see the passthrough view.
Before the latest firmware update, this passthrough view was not stereo correct. That is, the scale was not correct and users’ eyes would strain if they looked at it for a longer duration of time. The Oculus Rift S headset has however had the Passthrough+ feature thanks to its powerful PC graphics. The feature was thought to be impossible to implement on an Oculus Quest headset until now. The Passthrough+ feature cannot be activated with the push of the button. Such functionality will arrive later on.
According to Facebook, the Passthrough+ feature is now possible thanks to the “advancements in high-performance image processing and 3D computation”.
Oculus is planning to implement passthrough-on-demand later this year as the mode has now become more visually comfortable to use with the latest firmware update. The on-demand feature is already available on Rift S where users simply have to double tap an Oculus button on the Touch controller to either enter or exit the passthrough at any time. Due to this, you don’t have to take off your headset to glance around.
“Lights Out” 3DoF Mode
The Oculus Quest headset relies on four onboard cameras for tracking the user’s position in the room. If the room is not properly lit and the cameras can’t see the room, the wearer will see a black screen and the software will tell them to switch on a light.
Some Quest users have wanted a rotation-only (3DoF) tracking functionality in the dark and the update now delivers that. 3DoF tracking could come in handy, for example, when someone wants to have a virtual experience in the dark, such as when watching a movie in VR while a roommate is sleeping.
The 3DoF tracking functionality will allow the Oculus Quest headset to operate like an Oculus Go. As the controllers emit infrared light, it is not yet apparent whether they will fall back on to 3DoF or continue to be tracked fully.
Another major announcement made during the Oculus Connect 6 was the addition of more than 50 Oculus Go apps to Oculus Quest, with an emulation layer. This update now brings Quest compatibility to a total of 66 apps.
There are some other minor improvements such as the ability to customize notifications which allows Quest users to set the kind of notifications that they receive.
This new setting allows for updates to be started manually as soon as they are available on your virtual reality headsets. The new section in the settings also allows users to try out experimental functions. The Oculus Quest headset will now be able to recommend other guest users that the wearer may know personally.
On Oculus forum, you can find the complete list of the new features as well as the new improvements in the firmware update 9.0.