Meta Quest's Horizon OS opens up to third parties - and Xbox is among the first to hop on board

The Meta Quest 3 on a notebook surrounded by pens and school supplies on a desk
(Image credit: Meta)

Meta has announced a partnership with several manufacturers to bring a variety of new, limited-edition mixed-reality headsets to market.

As reported by VGC, one of these partners is Microsoft, which will be working with Meta to develop a limited-edition Meta Quest device that's potentially similar to Meta Quest 3, one of our picks for the best VR headsets.

An official Meta blog post confirmed the following: "Xbox and Meta teamed up last year to bring Xbox Cloud Gaming (Beta) to Meta Quest, letting people play Xbox games on a large 2D virtual screen in mixed reality. Now, we’re working together again to create a limited-edition Meta Quest, inspired by Xbox."

While Meta remains tight-lipped on the nature of this limited edition, Xbox-inspired Meta Quest device, it does delve more into the decision to expand its Horizon OS, so to speak. It explains that: "Meta Horizon OS will continue to give people more choice in how to access apps. 

"Because we don’t restrict users to titles from our own app store, there are multiple ways to access great content on Meta Horizon OS, including popular gaming services like Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, or through Steam Link or our Air Link system for wirelessly streaming PC software to headsets." In the post, Meta also encourages Google to bring its Play Store to Quest devices.

Meta also touches on other manufacturers it's partnered with. It confirms that Asus ROG will be developing "an all-new performance gaming headset." Meanwhile, Lenovo is set to "develop mixed reality devices for productivity, learning, and entertainment." Both will make use of Meta Horizon OS in creating these devices.

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg expanded on these partnerships in an Instagram post, perhaps teasing that the limited-edition Xbox-branded Quest headset may actually be quite simple, stating it could be "just a version that comes out of the box with Xbox controllers and Game Pass so that you can immediately just start playing on a big screen anywhere you go."

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Rhys Wood
Hardware Editor

Rhys is TRG's Hardware Editor, and has been part of the TechRadar team for more than two years. Particularly passionate about high-quality third-party controllers and headsets, as well as the latest and greatest in fight sticks and VR, Rhys strives to provide easy-to-read, informative coverage on gaming hardware of all kinds. As for the games themselves, Rhys is especially keen on fighting and racing games, as well as soulslikes and RPGs.