Oculus Quest hand-tracking lands early – but only for these VR apps

(Image credit: Oculus)
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The Oculus Quest VR headset now supports hand-tracking – as teased by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg himself at this year's Oculus Connect conference – which means you can start exploring the world of VR with just the wave of your hand.

While the hand-tracking feature is limited to a few functions and first-party apps, it marks the first step towards full hand freedom in your many VR games and experiences.

Anyone who owns an Oculus Quest can now update their headset's software to v12, and toggle hand-tracking in the Experimental Features menu. An option to switch between your hands and touch controllers has also appeared in the Oculus Home menu for easy access.

A blog post (opens in new tab) by Oculus wrote: "In this initial release, you can use your hands to navigate and interact within Quest’s Home interfaces like Library and Store, plus in select first-party apps like the Oculus Browser and Oculus TV."

While the feature has already landed for consumers, developers will be getting an SDK mid-December, allowing them to start working on bringing hand-tracking to third-party VR apps. 

While not all apps are certain to get the feature – and the added benefit will vary depending on the experience – we're likely to see a few more in the coming months get some kind of hand-tracking support to make the most of the update.

The Oculus blog post also said to expect "new features and functionality to improve the experience of hand tracking on Quest in 2020." We're seeing multiple improvements to user interfaces across the Oculus platform – including an Oculus Link accessory for playing Rift S games on the Quest, and accuracy fixes for camera-tracking – but you no longer need to sit on your hands waiting for this one.

Henry is a freelance technology journalist. Before going freelance, he spent more than three years at TechRadar reporting on TVs, projectors and smart speakers as the website's Home Cinema Editor – and has been interviewed live on both BBC World News and Channel News Asia, discussing the future of transport and 4K resolution televisions respectively. As a graduate of English Literature and persistent theatre enthusiast, he'll usually be found forcing Shakespeare puns into his technology articles, which he thinks is what the Bard would have wanted. Bylines also include Edge, T3, and Little White Lies.