The latest update to SteamVR, version 1.18.5, brings improvements to error handling of Oculus Link and Air Link which is meant to improve reliability. The update comes as Quest 2 reaches 31.07% of all VR headsets in use on Steam.
Valve has committed to making Steam a hardware agnostic place for VR headsets, even going so far as actively maintaining the code that makes Oculus headsets work on the platform in the first place. Continuing that work, the company has made improvements in the most recent SteamVR update (v1.18.5) which aim to improve the reliability of players using Quest or Quest 2 with their PC via Oculus Link & Air Link.
“Oculus users will no longer be required to restart SteamVR every time the Oculus runtime needs to reconnect to the HMD. You may still see a slight disruption during reconnection, for example, the Oculus software may prompt you to re-enable Oculus link if appropriate,” the company explains. “To minimize these disruptions, please follow Oculus guidelines for optimal Link and Air Link usage.”
The patch notes further say that “Connection loss to the HMD is now survivable in many cases.” This could happen especially from Wi-Fi disruptions for Air Link users.
While the patch notes specifically mention “Quest 2 over both wired and Air Link,” it’s our understanding that the improvements should apply to the original Quest as well, which was updated with the Air Link feature last month.
Valve has made steady improvements to SteamVR for Oculus headsets and others alike. Quest 2 has for several months now been the most popular VR headset in use on Steam, and last month it grew its lead even further, now holding 31.07% of the share of headsets on Steam, and 36.30% when including the original Quest, according to the Steam Hardware & Software Survey.