Facebook Pauses Sales Of Oculus Quest 2 VR Headset Over Skin Complaints

Facebook has paused sales of its Oculus Quest 2 virtual reality headset, and has issued a recall for four million of the components found on it.

The issue centres around a foam portion of the Quest 2 facial interface which rests on the skin, which has caused a “mild skin irritation” with a small percentage of users.

In June Facebook said it would begin testing ads in its Oculus Quest virtual reality headsets, in spite of an earlier claim that it would never do so.

The Oculus Quest 2 headset. Image credit: Oculus

Component recall

In 2017, after Facebook’s 2014 acquisition of Oculus, founder Palmer Luckey told The Next Web, “We are not going to track you, flash ads at you, or do anything invasive.”

Luckey left Oculus later that year, and co-founder Brendan Iribe departed in 2018.

But this week the Facebook owned unit announced it was voluntarily recalling a component in around 4 million of the devices, in cooperation with the US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).

“Oculus has recently taken actions in response to a very small percentage of users reporting a generally mild skin irritation where the foam portion of the Quest 2 facial interface rests on the skin,” said the firm.

Essentially the piece in question is a piece of foam that sits around a user’s eyes and nose and acts as a cushion between the headset and the person’s face.

“The safety and comfort of every customer is our top priority,”it added. “As part of this commitment we are now offering a free silicone cover to Quest 2 headset and Quest 2 Fit Pack owners.”

Affected users don’t have to return their handsets, but rather they can just request a free silicone cover that fits over the foam facial interface.

Medical attention

According to the CPSC statement on the matter, “the firm has received approximately 5,716 reports of incidents of skin irritation and approximately 45 reports of consumers that required medical attention.”

The reactions included rashes, swelling, burning, itching and hives, the agency said.

Facebook had introduced the Quest 2 headsets, a smaller and cheaper version of its predecessor, in September last year.

Tom Jowitt

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelancer and long standing contributor to Silicon UK. He is also a bit of a Lord of the Rings nut...

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