Facebook has been gradually encouraging users of its Oculus virtual reality (VR) products to sign-in using a Facebook account, citing reasons such as making connecting with friends easier. Today, the tech giant has announced what are to be some sweeping changes to the login system, starting later this year and continuing through to 2023.
Now you’ve been able to log in via a Facebook account for a while but some users either don’t have or don’t want a Facebook account of any sort. In the next couple of years that’ll be a necessity for using the company’s VR products.
In an announcement today Facebook outlined its future plans across three key points which will commence October 2020:
- Everyone using an Oculus device for the first time will need to log in with a Facebook account.
- If you’re an existing user and already have an Oculus account, you’ll have the option to log in with Facebook and merge your Oculus and Facebook accounts.
- If you’re an existing user and choose not to merge your accounts, you can continue using your Oculus account for two years.
For those with a Facebook account then there’s little to worry about, for the rest support for the old Oculus accounts will be discontinued after 1st January 2023. Now that doesn’t mean you’ll suddenly lose access to all the content you’ve purchased, you’ll still be able to use your headset. But won’t retain full functionality – only Facebook accounts will – to which it says: “we expect some games and apps may no longer work.”
What’s the point of all this? Well, Facebook is assimilating Oculus more and more into its ecosphere (as expected), so that the Oculus Code of Conduct will be replaced by Facebook’s Community Standards plus an additional VR-policy. The social media giant wants to make finding, connecting and playing with friends in VR simple whilst integrating more Facebook powered social features. One planned feature for local party gameplay experiences will allow multiple users to log into the same headset making it easy to share whilst keeping their information separate.
This will also mean Facebook using your VR usage data to tailor recommendations which of course will include ads for its products as well as apps by VR developers.