Facebook is continuing to stitch its services more closely together — it’s now rolling out Messenger on Oculus. People who have logged into a Quest or Quest 2 using their Facebook account will be able to chat with their Facebook friends while wearing their headset.
You can type out a message in virtual reality, send pre-written phrases or use the voice-to-text feature to chat with your buds. There’s also the option to start an Oculus Party from Messenger, so you and your friends can hop into the same game and, for instance, face off in Beat Saber.
According to the Oculus blog, chatting with Messenger friends through your headset doesn’t affect your Oculus privacy settings. You’ll still be able to use Oculus Chats to message friends with your Oculus username too. Facebook revealed in the fall that it would bring Messenger to Oculus, not long after it announced that all Oculus headsets will eventually require a Facebook account to use.
Software update v25, which is rolling out gradually, also introduces a feature called App Lab. This will give developers a means to distribute their apps and games outside of the Oculus Store without users having to sideload them. Facebook suggests this will allow it to maintain a high level of quality within the store while giving developers a safe, secure way to share creations that might be more unrefined or experimental.
Although these apps may not be in the Oculus Store, you can still search for them if you know the exact name and they’ll pop up in the App Lab section of the results. Developers can also share their apps with a URL. Any App Lab games or apps you buy will be added to your Quest library and they’ll receive automatic updates.