Meta Raises the Prices of Its Quest VR Headsets by $100

Meta, née Facebook, could also be one of the most influential and bold firms in the world, however that doesn’t imply it’s proof against broader financial woes. On the identical day a sequence of information tales revealed the extent of Meta’s recent belt-tightening, the firm stated it was elevating the costs of its Quest VR headsets.

It’s a noteworthy replace in an business that sometimes sees the costs of devices drop as know-how advances. A better value level on one of the world’s hottest VR headsets additionally creates one other potential barrier in Meta’s quest to get extra customers into digital actuality.

Starting in August, the two out there configurations of Meta Quest 2 VR headsets will each go up in value by $100. The 128-gigabyte mannequin will value $400, and the model with 256 GB of storage will value $500. A free obtain of the widespread Beat Saber recreation, sometimes $30, will ship with the headsets till the finish of the 12 months. This nudges the Meta Quest 2 headset nearer to the value of the $549 HP Reverb G2 and the HTC Vive Pro, which begins at $599 for a headset solely (sans hand controllers).

Meta stated, by way of a spokesperson, that it has invested billions of {dollars} in the VR ecosystem and that the firm is “adjusting the price of our Meta Quest 2 headsets to enable us to continue investing in ways that will keep driving this increasingly competitive industry forward for consumers and developers alike.”

The Meta Quest’s value change alerts a rethinking of the firm’s metaverse technique because it—and different tech firms—regulate to adjustments in the advert market and brace for a potential recession. Meta founder and chief govt Mark Zuckerberg has made it clear that he considers VR to be a long-term funding. Last 12 months, Meta stated it plans to speculate $10 billion in its metaverse efforts. Since then, the unit has bled cash. Meta spent greater than $10 billion on VR in 2021 alone, and in its first-quarter 2022 outcomes, it reported a loss of practically $3 billion for its metaverse division.

A researcher at IDC, Francisco Jeronimo, shared via Twitter last month that Meta has offered practically 15 million items of the Quest 2 because it launched in 2020, and that the firm has managed to seize an overwhelmingly giant share of the VR market. But its dominance won’t final perpetually. While VR shipments are forecast to develop this 12 months, with doubtlessly as many as 14 million items shipped in 2022 alone, anticipated headsets from ByteDance, Sony, and Apple might put strain on Meta, IDC analysts warn.

But in the meantime, a $100 value hike on Quest 2 is unlikely to meaningfully enhance margins for Meta. It would possibly simply imply the firm loses barely much less cash on its metaverse push, because it continues to pitch its imaginative and prescient of our computing future.

“Most people expect Meta to take a loss on VR, and maybe break even at some point,” says Anshel Sag, principal analyst at Moor Insights & Strategy. “The problem with this price increase is that usually people expect, when a product is out this long, that it will get a price cut, not an increase. That’s the most jarring part of this. It bucks the usual consumer electronics trend.” The firm should need to supply discounted variations of Meta Quest 2 round the holidays, he provides, however the “discounted” costs might now align with the product’s unique pricing.

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