Oculus Unveils App Lab, Quest’s New Software Portal
After announcing how well developers are doing on Oculus Quest today, the company is now rolling out its long-awaited distribution feature so creators have an easier path onto the headset. Its called App Lab, part of Oculus’ v25 update for Oculus Quest being rolled out today.
Previously, if a developer couldn’t get on the tightly curated Oculus Store the other avenue open to them was SideQuest, where owners could sideload content that was either early in development or didn’t meet the official stores standards. App Lab removes the hassle of sideloading and with it connects developers with new VR users who may not have had the equipment or know how to access these titles.
App Lab videogames will be located inside the normal app and they don’t require any sort of special setup to work. In a blog post, Oculus notes that: “App Lab titles are not housed in the Oculus Store, though they can be searched by exact name and found in the “App Lab” section of results.” Once purchased they’ll appear alongside all your normal content in Oculus Quest’s library.
Oculus announced plans for App Lab last summer and then followed that up in December confirming a Q1 2021 roll out. For those worried what would happen to SideQuest don’t be as the platform supports App Lab apps. Oculus even says: “community-focused platforms of that nature may play a bigger role in Quest’s future,” which would be great for devs and players alike.
For its launch today App Lab will feature the following selection of titles:
- Ancient Dungeon Beta by ErThu
- Baby Hands by Chicken Waffle
- Crisis VRigade and Crisis VRigade 2 by Sumalab
- Deism by Myron Software
- Descent Alps – Demo by Sutur
- Gym Class by IRL Studios Inc
- MarineVerse Cup by MarineVerse
- Puzzling Places – Beta by realities.io Inc
- Spark AR Player by Facebook
- Smash Drums Demo by PotamWorks
- Zoe by apelab
Like previous software updates, v25 will be steadily released so it may take a few days before you can access the new features. Also on the release note list are improvements to the Stationary Guardian 2.0, Universal Menu access, Oculus Browser, Camera roll and the addition of a Bluetooth mouse while in-VR. For further updates from Oculus, keep reading VRFocus.