, the runaway hit VR headset, has been largely unavailable from any retailer since the holidays. After sporadically coming back in stock for the last few months, it's been completely sold out for weeks now and could point to the imminent arrival of a new Oculus Quest model this fall.
The Quest earned an Editors' Choice Award here at CNET last year, and unlike most gadgets, it has gotten significantly better with age.
last year rolled out a hand-tracking update that makes it possible for developers to create games that don't require controllers, and the Oculus Link software and cable enables the Quest to be tethered to a PC and play games written for the
. Which brings us to the latest reason for shortages: Half-Life: Alyx, a flagship VR title from Valve that's designed to be run on pricey tethered headsets, but can be played just fine on a relatively inexpensive Quest using the Oculus Link.
The headset has been out of stock due to a combination of consumer demand, the impact of the coronavirus on manufacturing, and even sales bots that automate the purchase of limited-inventory products like the Quest and
before average consumers can get to the website. More recently, shortages could point to a retooling of the assembly line for a new headset.
Watch this: We took Oculus Quest on vacation
That said, if you are getting a Quest with plans to play Half-Life: Alyx, you might need to get a long USB-C cable, and those have been hard to come by as well. You can use the USB charging cable that came with your Quest, but it's just 3 meters long, which is a little short for VR gaming. The gold standard is the 5-meter Oculus Link cable from Oculus, but at $79, it's a little pricey -- and USB-C at both ends. I recently got the 16-foot Masiken Oculus Quest Link Cable for about $30, which plugs into a USB-A port, and it works fabulously.
While we wait for what is likely to be an inevitable next-gen Quest VR headset and if you want to strap into some Beat Saber sooner rather than later, you'll have to keep a close eye on inventory at major retailers. You can check out the current availability below.
Updated Sept. 13: No new 64GB Quest models are in stock at the list price of $399 at any of the vendors listed below.
128GB version ($499)
Updated Sept. 13: No new 128GB Quest models are in stock at the list price of $499 at any of the vendors listed below.
Out of stock
Note that this list may include bundles, used/refurbished models and third-party vendors that are listed as "in stock," but often at much higher than the list price or with ship dates that are far in the future.