Meta says they’ll roll out Meta Accounts, the new platform to use their Quest VR headsets instead of going through Facebook. This update does address one of the major downsides of using a Quest headset, which currently requires a Facebook login — though, that didn’t stop the Quest 2 from being the most dominant choice among VR users.
When you boil it down, Meta Accounts still feels very much like the exact same thing people were trying to avoid. When you make a Meta Account, you’ll have to create a Meta Horizon profile, which is essentially another social media profile under the Meta umbrella.
No escaping the metaverse — The Meta Horizon profile will replace your Oculus profile and serve as your social profile in VR, Meta says. You can customize the appearance, profile photo, avatar, and whatever else, so it’s pretty much like the metaverse version of Facebook. The silver lining is you can set your privacy settings to “solo,” as opposed to “open to everyone” or “friends and family,” so you can keep your profile private and just focus on gaming. Still, you’re part of the Meta ecosystem that is hellbent on hoovering up personal data.
If you’re not actually opposed to being on Facebook or Instagram, you can link your Meta account to either social media platform for some cross-platform functionality like finding friends. Meta is also shifting its friends model on the Quest to a followers structure, similar to Instagram.
Never-ending quest — Meta removing the Facebook requirement for its headsets and replacing it with Meta accounts if good for anyone not jazzed about being on Facebook, but feels a little hollow. Its headsets probably should’ve never required being a part of Facebook just to play some Beat Saber in the first place.
Meta isn’t actually addressing the root of the problem, which is that people don’t want to be a part of its data-hungry ecosystem. Those who were unwilling to get a Quest VR headset because of the Facebook login are unlikely to be persuaded into making a Meta Horizon account. Either way, the shift is one we should get used to. Meta says, “...in the future, we’ll extend Meta account functionality so you can use it to log into other Meta devices.”