Having the largest mobile app store (Play Store) on the most extensive VR headset (Meta Quest VR) isn’t possible. This is a result of one party turning down an offer from the other to work together. Yes, Google turned down Meta’s offer to bring the Play Store to the Quest VR headsets for users to enjoy.
Even though the Quest VR headsets run on a modified version of Android, the availability of Android apps for use is limited. Why is this, are there some technical drawbacks that prevent porting Android apps to Meta’s VR headsets? As Meta’s CTO, Andrew Bosworth, explains, there are no technical limitations that prevent bringing more Android apps over to their VR headsets.
Developers can bring their apps from Android over to VR headsets for usage. However, the major problem lies in the distribution of these apps, as an actual app store is required for this. Google, having the necessary means to provide Android apps to Meta VR headset users is not willing to do so.
For some reason, Google isn’t willing to bring the Play Store to the Quest VR headset
During an AMA session on Instagram, Meta CTO Andrew Bosworth answered some questions from the Quest community. Among the questions that community members threw at him was related to the availability of Android apps on the VR headset. In response to this, he said that “nothing is preventing Android developers” from bringing their apps to Quest VR headsets.
He goes on to say that all developers have to do is send them their APKs to make their apps available to users. There might be some modifications to the APKs to make them suitable for usage on VR headsets. However, there is a lack of a distribution channel for these APKs between the developers, Meta, and the end users.
Meta’s CTO goes on to point out that Google has been approached to bring the Play Store to Quest VR headsets. Well, the tech giant refused to grant this request, hence the need for a workaround. But what exactly is the reason behind Google’s decision on this issue?
Well, there is no clear-cut reason as to why Google takes this stand, but one can imagine it’s all about competition. It’s no news that Google is nurturing some VR dreams and aspirations. So will its refusal to bring the Play Store to Quest VR headsets help its VR dreams and aspirations?
Well, there’s no proof to back that line of thought and it might be false in itself. However, users of the Quest VR headset will be more than thrilled to have Android apps on their headsets. Meta might be working on a way to bring these apps to their VR products, but only time will reveal its efforts.
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