The Meta Quest 3 is officially here and it's available to purchase now. The headset builds upon the popular Meta Quest 2 and adds full-color video passthrough and mixed reality features. It's also the best VR headset available. Read our full Quest 3 review now to see how it holds up in our early testing. Spoiler alert: so far we're pretty impressed.
While the Quest 3 costs $200 more than the Quest 2, it does come with a fair amount of upgrades. The new headset features a 40% slimmer visor and a new Snapdragon chipset to power its virtual reality and mixed reality experiences. While Meta plans to keep the Quest 2 around for a while, it's clear that the Quest 3 is undoubtedly the flagship of its lineup.
Read on for everything we know so far about Meta Quest 3.
Editor's Note: Check out our Meta Connect 2023 live blog for a recap of all the latest news from the company's big event, including the Quest 3, new AI bots, a new pair of Ray-Ban Meta Smart Glasses (which we went hands-on with) and more!
Meta Quest 3 release date
The Meta Quest 3 is officially available for purchase!
Right now, if you purchase the 128GB model you’ll get Asgard’s Wrath 2 for free. If you upgrade and Purchase the 512GB model you'll also get a six-month Meta Quest Plus subscription in addition to the free game. This pre-order offer ends on January 27, 2024.
You can pre-order the Quest 3 from the Meta Store in 23 countries or from select retailers. In the U.S. you can pre-order from Amazon, Best Buy, Target and Walmart. U.K. customers can pre-order from Amazon, Curry's and Argos.
One place you currently cannot buy the Meta Quest 3 is China, but that looks set to be changing. According to The Wall Street Journal, Meta is returning to China and it's bringing the Quest 3 with it. However, the expectation is this version of the Quest 3 will be cheaper — tentatively dubbed a "Quest 3 Lite" by some analysts.
Meta Quest 3 price
In the U.S., the Meta Quest 3 starts at $499 for a model with 128GB of storage, which is $100 more than the Quest 2 and its $299 price tag. There is also a larger storage size model — 512 GB — available for $649.
In the U.K., the launch price is £479 for the 128GB model and £619 for the larger 512GB model. In the E.U. the launch price is €549 for the 128GB model and €699 for the 512GB model. In Australia, the launch price for the 128GB base model is AU$799.
Meta Quest 3 specs
|Price||$499.00 (128GB), $649 (512GB)|
|Launch date||September 27|
|Release date||October 10|
|CPU||Qualcomm Snapdragon XR2 Gen 2|
|Display||4K+ Infinite Display (2 LCDs with 2064 x 2208 pixels per eye)|
|Full-color passthrough||Two RGB cameras (18 PPD)|
|Refresh rate||90Hz (native), 120Hz (experimental)|
|Field of View||110 degrees horizontal, 96 degrees vertical|
|Dimensions||184 mm x 160 mm x 98 mm|
|Battery life||up to 2.9 hours (rated)|
|Charge time||2 hours (rated)|
|Connectivity||Wi-Fi 6e, Bluetooth 5.2|
The Meta Quest 3 comes in two storage sizes: 128GB and 512BG. This is slightly disappointing since 256GB feels like the perfect storage size, but at least there is an option for those that need a ton of space.
But more importantly, the Quest 3 is getting a new chipset. The headset is powered by the brand-new Qualcomm Snapdragon XR2 Gen 2. Meta says this gives the Quest 3 twice the graphics processing power of the Quest 2. The Quest 3 is also getting a RAM upgrade, with 8GB of RAM instead of the Quest 2's 6GB. Unfortunately, this does fall short of the 12GB of RAM you get with the Meta Quest Pro.
The Meta Quest 3 also gets an upgraded display. Meta calls the new displays the 4K+ Infinite Display, which is two LCDs using pancake optics to achieve 2,064 x 2,208 pixels per eye resolution. Meta says this enhances the Quest 3's resolution by nearly 30% compared to Meta Quest 2. Further resolution specs include 25 pixels per degree (PPD) in virtual reality and 1,218 pixels per inch (PPI).
When using the headset's full-color video passthrough, the resolution does dip a bit. In mixed reality, the resolution is 18 PPD powered by two RGB cameras rather than 25 PPD. However, this is still an upgrade, as Meta says this is "over 10x more pixels in Passthrough compared to Quest 2 and 3x more pixels compared to Quest Pro."
In terms of refresh rate, the Quest 3 features a native 90Hz refresh rate with a 120Hz experimental refresh rate. Hopefully, the Quest 3 eventually pushes 144Hz thanks to eventual post-launch updates but for now, it caps out at 120Hz.
One aspect of the Quest 3 that is not getting an upgrade is battery life. The Quest 3 features the same battery life numbers as the Quest 2, which according to Meta is typically around 2.2 hours but can push 2.9 hours when just consuming media. The headset will charge back up to full from 0% in two hours with the included 18W charger, which is also about on par with the Quest 2.
Meta Quest 3 design
The Meta Quest 3 has been completely redesigned from the "inside out" according to Meta. While the headset has the same overall aesthetic as the Quest 2, its optic profile is now 40% slimmer, thanks in part to pancake lenses. It also has a bold trio of two pill-shaped RGB cameras and a depth projector on the front of the headset to facilitate the full-color video passthrough.
There's also a new Lens Distance Adjustment Wheel that allows for more precise interpupillary distance (IPD) fine-tuning. The headset supports an IPD of 53 mm to 75 mm. The built-in eyeglasses and depth adjustment eliminate the need for the glasses spacing insert that you needed with the Quest 2.
The speakers also get a boost in the Quest 3. Meta says the audio range for the Quest 3 is 40% louder than the Quest 2 and that the Quest 3 produces 3D spatial audio with enhanced clarity and bass. There is a 3.5 mm headphone jack if you want to plug in your own headphones for more immersive audio.
In terms of the strap, the Quest 3 gets a soft strap included with an optional hard Elite Strap available for purchase for $69. This is similar to the Quest 2, though the strap design is slightly altered for a more secure fit. However, Meta has officially paused sales of the Elite Strap with Battery. This is because the external battery included with this version of the Quest 3's strap won't recharge. It's unclear why this issue occurred but Meta says that units without the critical flaw are being manufactured and will arrive at retailers.
One downside to all of these design changes? The impressive components are going to be difficult to replace. In a teardown of the new Quest 3, iFixit found that the repairability of the Quest 3 is poor, giving it a 4 out of 10 repairability score. This is largely due to the difficulty in getting to the headset components, but also due to the lack of replacement parts available to consumers if something does break.
As for the controllers, Meta has redesigned the Quest 3's Touch Plus controllers to be more ergonomic — not easy to tell from the quick video, but we have noticed a major improvement in our hands-on time with the headset.
The Touch Plus controllers also sport TruTouch haptics, giving the Quest 3 controllers a feature we love in the PSVR 2. This should provide users with a more realistic and immersive experience.
Unfortunately, the Touch Plus controllers — frustratingly — rely on disposable AA batteries. However, the headset does have a Meta Quest Charging Dock available for an additional $129. The wireless charging for the headset is facilitated by contact pads on the bottom of the headset and includes lithium-ion rechargeable batteries for the controllers.
Meta Quest 3 features
The headline feature for the Quest 3 is, of course, the mixed reality capabilities facilitated by the headset's full-color video passthrough. This allows you to go back and forth between immersive VR content and passthrough-facilitated AR experiences with holographic overlays with a simple double-tap on the side of the headset to swap. Check out our guide to the new Meta Quest 3 mixed reality features, including five that you can try as soon as you get the headset.
The Quest 3 will also get access to the Quest 2's entire library of content, including all of the best Meta Quest 2 games. Plus, over 100 new Quest 3 apps and upgraded Quest 2 apps are coming to Meta Quest 3 through the end of the year, meaning you'll have no shortage of experiences and games to try out. Make sure to check out our round-up of the Meta Quest 3 games we know are coming so far.
The Quest 3 also gets the Quest 2's PC VR compatibility with Windows PCs thanks to the Quest Link and Air Link. That means access to nearly all of the best VR games. And, like the Quest 2, it'll get access to Meta Quest Plus. Quest Plus is Meta's VR gaming subscription service that offers two curated games a month to subscribers for just $7.99 a month.
One feature that should be a major improvement? Thanks to the Quest 3's six advanced camera sensors, the Quest boundary feature can now automatically scan your playspace to determine your playspace boundary. Quest 3 can automatically scan your room in 3D, understanding where walls, floors, furniture and other surfaces are located, which is a huge boost the ensuring mixed reality experiences function properly.
Unfortunately, while the Quest 3 does get Direct Touch hand tracking it will not feature eye tracking. That means no foveated rending on the Quest 3 — a feature you do get on pricier headsets with beefier hardware.
Meta Quest 3 vs Meta Quest 2
Just because Meta has a new flagship headset doesn't mean that it's forgetting about the popular Meta Quest 2. In fact, the Quest 3 announcement made it seem like the Quest 2 will now serve as the entry point into the metaverse for the near future, with Quest 3 providing the ultimate Meta Quest experience. Check out our full Meta Quest 3 versus Meta Quest 2 face-off to see all the biggest differences between the two headsets.
If you don't want to pay up for the Quest 3, don't feel like you have to. Thanks to Meta's price reduction and its commitment to building out a Quest product line, there's never been a better time to buy the Quest 2. Check out our three reasons why you should buy the Meta Quest 2 right now.
Meta Quest 3 vs Apple Vision Pro
Meta isn't the only company out there with a new headset. Apple has announced the Apple Vision Pro — the company's first headset ever. And while both headsets show off their mixed reality features, the two headsets are genuinely different. And it's not just about the price tag and specs, both headsets tackle the issue of experiencing mixed reality in notably different ways. Check out our Apple Vision Pro versus Meta Quest 3 face-off for the full breakdown.
Meta Quest 3 outlook
Overall, it looks like Meta added a lot of meaningful upgrades to the Quest 3. A slimmer design, improved displays, a more powerful processor and improved controllers are just part of the improvements Meta has made. And it allows you to experience mixed reality without needing to spend $999 for the Meta Quest Pro, which is a welcome development.
But at $200 more than the Quest 2, the Quest 3 is going to need to prove that its performance is noticeably superior and that mixed reality is worth the extra money. It's largely proven the former, but mixed reality still isn't quite there. We still think that the Quest is enough of an improvement overall that it's worth getting over the Quest 2, just don't expect a mixed reality marvel yet. Hopefully, that will improve as more developers release Quest 3 apps.