With previously hidden ‘App Lab’ apps now discoverable on the main Quest store, the $1,000 WeldVR is the most expensive app you can find on Meta’s VR app store. But fret not, you can get a free trial… for 20 whole minutes.

For years, Meta only allowed select apps onto the main Quest store (which Meta recently rebranded as the ‘Meta Horizon Store’). Apps that weren’t greenlit for the Horizon Store could be published to ‘App Lab’, which gave the app a home to be bought and installed, but the apps would remain ‘unlisted’, meaning they could only be accessed with a direct link or by searching the exact name of the app.

Now Meta is finally breaking down the barriers between App Lab and the Horizon Store, essentially making all App Lab apps available to find by browsing or searching terms that are at least similar to the app’s actual name.

With the main Horizon Store and App Lab now mashed together, it’s possible to find plenty of new games but also lots of interesting experimental and non-game apps.

That means the $1,000 WeldVR app is now the most expensive app you can find on the Horizon Store—beating out the previous ‘most expensive app’, the $240 medical training app, Fetal Heart VR. This establishes a new maximum price that Meta has permitted for an app. For comparison, Apple’s App Store allows apps to be priced up to $10,000, and Google’s Play Store up to $400.

WeldVR is a training app that’s designed to teach the basics of welding. While we can’t attest to how well the app manages to train people in this skill, the idea is at least sound: learning to weld normally requires expensive equipment or signing up for training courses; if a $1,000 VR app can teach you the basics for less than the cost of equipment and courses, there could be real value there.

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The company behind WeldVR, Cythero, says the app “provides trainees with a range of welding scenarios and welding techniques (MIG, TIG, and Stick), as well as different joint types and welding positions. By incorporating realistic welding sound and lifelike puddle simulations, our simulator helps trainees to develop their ability to respond to and adjust their welding technique, ultimately enhancing their overall welding skills.”

The app also offers statistics and feedback to show users how they’re doing and where to improve.

Image courtesy Cythero

In addition to the $1,000 version of the app, which anyone with a Quest 2 (and beyond) can use, the company also sells a complete package including the headset, a hard case, software, multiple user profiles, online analytics, and peripheral attachments to more realistically simulate the welding tools being used. Priced at €6,000, the package is built with corporate and course training in mind, rather than individual users.

Not ready to plop down $1,000 to see if welding is for you? Well you’re in luck… you can activate a 20 minute trial right from the app’s store page.

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Ben is the world's most senior professional analyst solely dedicated to the XR industry, having founded Road to VR in 2011—a year before the Oculus Kickstarter sparked a resurgence that led to the modern XR landscape. He has authored more than 3,000 articles chronicling the evolution of the XR industry over more than a decade. With that unique perspective, Ben has been consistently recognized as one of the most influential voices in XR, giving keynotes and joining panel and podcast discussions at key industry events. He is a self-described "journalist and analyst, not evangelist."
  • ViRGiN

    This feels more like a stunt so websites like this actually give it exposure. Plus who’s there to certify they aren’t teaching improperly? You’ll still need to pass a real course to get a license, so $1000 is nonsense.

    • Guest

      If it were cheaper, I could see people using this as a sort of primer or prep so that once they go through the real certification process they can increase their odds of completion or passage. But yeah, it’s hard to know just how legit this is. At these prices, it should damn near certify you all on its own.

      • Charles Bosse

        Watching the short video, it’s definitely something I might pick up for, like, $50 even though I am not ever planning to get into pro welding.

        • “Coming to a Switch near you: ‘Welding*Star'” … lol
          8^ )

  • Stephen Bard

    There is at least one other $999.99 app in the App Lab, called “The Holy City -Exploration of Faith”

  • Stephen Bard

    App Lab apps have been so well hidden that even good/free apps often have no reviews. Even the new Store App Lab tab currently allows access to only about 100 of the 3000+ apps in the App Lab that are findable on Sidequest.

    • That’s just 3%.

      • Stephen Bard

        I have sent Meta several requests that they actually have access to all 3000+ App Lab apps under the new tab in chronological order by release date, but they seldom do anything useful like that, so I’ll just continue to use Sidequest.

    • Octogod

      That’s my big concern with the App Lab being integrated into the filters.

      Opening up App Lab looks like a move towards openness, but Meta choosing to highlight a fraction of the content and no ‘Most Popular’ or “Recent’ really destroys the usefulness, at the moment.

      • Stephen Bard

        So far, the new App Lab tab is just a misleading tease, because most people are oblivious that they are only seeing 2-3% of the App Lab apps. I have been relying on Sidequest as the Only source for lists of App Lab apps, routinely checking their New section every day for years. I had foolishly assumed that Sidequest included All the App Lab apps, via some formal handoff from Meta. Then, just last week, I was doing searches in the Quest Store, where the results always include alot of random unrelated App Lab apps. I noticed several recent App Lab apps that had never appeared in my daily visit to the New section in Sidequest. This caused me to run a little study using Store searches of hundreds of random search words . . . and I quickly found hundreds of App Lab apps that had never appeared in Sidequest . . . or anywhere else! Over 300 of them were interesting enough to add to my Library. I submitted a Support inquiry to Sidequest and they acknowledge the problem.

  • It cheaper to get a simpler welder, watch a few you tube videos and fuse some metal.

    • Christian Schildwaechter

      I’m still a pretty shitty welder, but it took me less than USD 200 for a beginner friendly flux-cored arc welding power supply, automatic helmet and protection equipment, plus a few YouTube videos and some try and error to get usable (for me) results.

      Based on how much try and error was involved due to the actual results not matching what I expected, I somewhat doubt that a VR simulation will provide the same experience as accidentally burning holes into metal and things falling apart again immediately. And compared to someone paying five times as much to weld in VR, I still have all the physical equipment to burn more holes into stuff anytime I want to.

  • I bet it’s an app for b2b usage they sell to their customers

    • Christian Schildwaechter

      Based on my little experience with welding, and the utterly useless informations their statistics display, I’d bet that they had the idea to sell this as a B2B training app at a professional price, but sold absolutely nothing to anyone involved with actually training welders.

  • g-man

    Even if it’s much cheaper than getting the equipment it’s still an a-hole move to price it so high.

    • polysix

      but it’s NOT cheaper than getting the real gear. It’s more.. way more (and pointless)

  • Stephen Bard

    That Other $999.99 App Lab app called “The Holy City – Exploration of Faith”, also has an elaborate website “Holy City VR” that you can easily find (but links don’t work in these comments).

    • Nahhh ….
      Not at all interested in the IRL locations of multi-thousand year old primitive superstitions ….

      • Stephen Bard

        I have no interest in the app either, other than curiosity as to whether the price is an error. In any event, the Welding app is not the Only most expensive app, and I suspect that there are one or two more $1000 apps, but I haven’t kept track of that variable in my App Lab research.

  • polysix

    Complete waste of money. You can’t beat practical hands on experience (and failure) for this stuff. While VR can help, at this price it’s moot. At most it would be worth around 50 dollars.

  • Where is that “I am Rich” app for the Quest? Seriously, you can price anything for anything, it doesn’t make it news worthy. Where’s the ambitious 5 year old with a lemonade stand selling the $1 Million glass of lemonade?

    I think the developer got exactly what he wanted: Some fools to talk about his app.