SideQuest announced on Twitter that Virtual Desktop passed 200,000 unique downloads on the sideloading platform, the first app to do so.
Virtual Desktop allows you to bring your computer’s display into VR, providing you with a streamed version of your desktop that you can interact with and control from within VR. It requires the Virtual Desktop app on your headset, along with a companion streamer app installed on your computer.
The app is available for purchase on the Oculus Store for Quest, however, an alternate version is available to be patched onto your device from SideQuest. This patch enables wireless streaming of PC VR content, including SteamVR and Oculus games, to your headset from your VR-ready PC. It works similarly to Oculus Link, but is a fully wireless solution.
This feature initially launched for the official version of the app on the Oculus Store, but Facebook forced its removal shortly after launch. Now, the feature can be enabled through SideQuest by downloading and installing the patch — however, the patch needs to be installed over an official version of Virtual Desktop, so users still need to purchase the app through Facebook first.
Reaching 200,000 unique downloads of the sideloaded version is a significant milestone for Virtual Desktop and SideQuest, and proof that there is strong demand for a wireless PC VR streaming solution for Quest. Virtual Desktop won’t necessarily work for everyone, however — the reliability of wireless PC VR streaming to Quest is dependent on the strength of the user’s local network and the layout of the area, as walls and other elements may cause disruptions.
This is one of the reasons Facebook told Godin to remove the feature from the Oculus Store version, as an unreliable connection could cause discomfort for users when streaming PC VR content. Facebook is working on some kind of native version of the technology as well, which John Carmack recently referred to as ‘Air Link’.
Virtual Desktop developer Guy Godin recently got 90Hz PC VR content streaming on Oculus Quest 2 using the headset’s 90Hz mode, but later provided an update that the mode will be disabled at launch but will be re-enabled in a future update from Facebook.