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Meta Explains Why Quest Headsets Stopped Working, Vows To Make Them "More Resilient"

Meta Explains Why Quest Headsets Stopped Working, Vows To Make Them "More Resilient"

Meta's VP of VR explained why Quest headsets were unusable for an hour yesterday, and vowed to make them "more resilient" to issues like this in future.

If you missed it: every internet-connected Quest headset stopped working for around an hour yesterday morning, and Meta's other services like Facebook, Instagram, and Threads weren't working either. Quest headsets simply showed a 'Something went wrong' screen preventing the main system interface from appearing, meaning no apps could be launched.

Meta Servers Broken, All Quest Headsets Unusuable
Meta’s servers weren’t working correctly earlier today, and the issue rendered all Quest headsets temporarily unusable.

While some commentators incorrectly claimed that this was because Quest headsets require a constant connection to Meta's servers, we at UploadVR knew that wasn't the case, as we've used Quest headsets without an internet connection on multiple occasions, and even on networks that block Meta's servers. That's what made this incident so strange.

What Quest headsets do require, while online, is a logged in Meta account. We noticed that Meta's other services like Facebook logged all users out, and the 'Something went wrong' screen on Quest was actually the device's login interface. This suggested to us that either Meta's server issued a signout command to all apps and devices or a client-side security check thought the login token is no longer secure, as if you'd clicked "sign out" in the headset's settings.

In a post on X, Meta's CTO Andrew Bosworth responded to this analogy saying "yes, exactly like that. This was an unexpected outcome and we are working on it".

In a more detailed post also on X, Meta's VP of VR Mark Rabkin described our assessment as "quite accurate", and offered the following more specific explanation as well as a vow to prevent it happening in future:

So there you have it. Meta's servers sent erroneous login-session-related data to all headsets, which made the headset think the login was no longer valid. This kind of reaction would be useful in a situation where your headset was stolen and you changed your password, for example, but is very annoying when it happens because of a technical issue.

Rabkin vowed Meta will "work to make it more resilient to this super rare condition".

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