Oculus announced that users will be required to log into Oculus with their Facebook accounts. This change will start in October of 2020. If you aren’t a fan of Facebook, and don’t want to make an account there, you will eventually be unable to use Oculus.
Starting on October of 2020, everyone using an Oculus device for the first time will need to log in with a Facebook account. Existing users who already have an Oculus account will have the option to log in with Facebook and merge their Oculus and Facebook accounts. Existing users who choose not to merge their Oculus and Facebook accounts can continue using their Oculus for two years.
After January 1, 2023, we will end support for Oculus accounts. If you choose not to merge your accounts at that time, you can continue using your device, but full functionality will require a Facebook account. We will take steps to allow you to keep using content you have purchased, though we expect some games and apps may no longer work. This could be because they include features that require a Facebook account or because a developer has chosen to no longer support the app or game you purchased. All future unreleased Oculus devices will require a Facebook account, even if you already have an Oculus account.
Facebook says that it will be possible to log into Oculus with a Facebook account and still create or maintain a unique VR profile. If you don’t want your Oculus friends to find you by your Facebook name, they won’t – if you make it visible to “Only Me” in your Oculus settings.
There are plans for Facebook to enable multiple users to log into the same Oculus device with each one using their own Facebook account. This appears to be aimed at families who want to share the Oculus device. It also may be possible to share an Oculus device with friends.
The Verge reported that Facebook is not rolling out any new ads on the Oculus platform right now. Requiring users to sign in to Oculus with a Facebook account removes the last layer of separation between the two.
To me, it makes Oculus feel even more like a “walled garden” than before. Those who don’t want to make a Facebook account will not have any way to access whatever content Oculus provides. Video game consoles also tend to make their games only accessible on their own platform – with the exception of the ones that are also playable on PC.
The difference is that Facebook has a long history of sketchy behavior in regards to how they treat their users, especially when it comes to security of personal information. I have concerns that everything Facebook users say and do within Oculus will be used by Facebook in unexpected ways.