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Though Quest and Rift S were either out of stock or behind lengthy backorder queues for much of the year due to the Coronavirus pandemic, in the last two months availability of both headsets had significantly improved. Now Quest is suddenly out of stock globally, fueling rumors that Quest 2 will be announced next week during Facebook Connect.
We checked stock availability for direct purchases from Oculus.com for Quest (64GB), Quest (128GB), and Rift S across all regions where the headsets are sold.
The latest shows that stock for both Quest (64GB) and Quest (128GB) has gone from being fairly steady in most regions to completely out of stock across the globe. Meanwhile, Rift S remains largely available but with backorder of just over a week in most regions.
Quests sudden, global lack of stock comes just one week before Facebook Connect is due to be held on September 16th. Multiple third-party retailers have also been spotted listing Quest as ‘Discontinued’
Formerly called Oculus Connect, the conference is Facebook’s annual VR-focused event where it shares news and connects with developers. The coincidental timing of Quest’s out of stock status aligns with rumors that Facebook will announce a Quest 2 headset at Facebook Connect.
Back in July, purportedly leaked photos of Quest 2 surfaced online. Just a week ago, listings for an Oculus headset with the codename ‘Point Reyes’ on Walmart pointed to a $300 price point for a 64GB model and a $400 price point for a 256GB model.
Background: Coronavirus Disruption of VR Headset Stock
Facebook announced back in early February that it expected the Coronavirus to impact the availability of its headsets, and shortly thereafter all of the company’s headsets became unavailable in all regions for a long stretch. Shortages prompted the company to begin selling refurbished versions of the original Oculus Rift headset which it had discontinued the year prior.
In late April a Facebook spokesperson told us the following:
“We continue to make products available in all channels as quickly as possible for people to buy. As you’ve noted, Quest and Rift S have been intermittently in stock in some channels and regions. No specific estimate to share on future stock expectations, as the situation remains dynamic.”
The spokesperson said that in regions where headsets are out of stock, customers can use the ‘Notify Me’ option on the buy page for each headset to sign up to be alerted to new stock. Notifications will go out in order of sign-up.
According to the New York Times, China—where Oculus headsets are manufactured—began reopening factories in February. “By some measures, China’s economy is getting back on track. By the end of February, most of its factories and mines had reopened, according to a variety of data, cranking out everything from steel to cellphones at a blistering pace through March. Industrial output rebounded to a near-record level,” Keith Bradsher, the publication’s Shanghai bureau chief, reported in late April.
Availability of Valve’s Index headset has also been substantially impacted by the Coronavirus, but in recent months availability has been steadily improving.
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