Meta Quest 3S leaks: Could it be the best VR headset 2024?

If you're after fast and enjoyable VR gaming around $300, Meta's Quest 2 was the top choice, but it's now out of stock. Did you know the 3S could be the next budget-friendly and feature-rich headset?

Meta Quest 3S leaks: Could it be the best VR headset 2024?
Meta Quest 3S leaks & rumors / Image Credit: Becca Farsace, The Verge

Are you looking to dive into realistic digital worlds but don’t want to spend big on the Meta Quest 3 and are disappointed that the Quest 2 is sold out? Meta Quest 3S leaks reveal that you may get plenty of Quest 3 features at a more affordable price. Whether you’re after smooth gameplay or picture quality, you may find a suitable offer in the Meta Quest 3S. Below, I’ve compiled what could make the 3S the world’s best and cheapest VR headset while also pointing out considerations to keep in mind. Read on for a sneak peek ahead of the official product unveiling.

Quest 3S strengths

Recently, tech communities were abuzz when @Lunayian on X (formerly Twitter) apparently shared Quest 3S’s specs after claiming to have seen devkits and spoken to people familiar with the device. The 3S comes with the same Touch Plus controllers and Snapdragon XR2 Gen 2 processor as its higher-end counterpart, Quest 3, according to the source. Even though both headsets use the same robust processor, some games might, counterintuitively, run smoother on the Quest 3S as it requires less processing power to render its lower-resolution graphics.

You can also expect controllers similar to those of the Quest 3, which do away with the Quest 2’s sensor ring. In games like Black Hole Pool and Onward, some players using Quest 3 controllers experience slight hand tremors while aiming their shots. However, the 3S controllers will be less visible, relying more on internal motion sensors for tracking, reports Forbes.

We should also talk about the mixed reality passthrough of the 3S. Meta Quest 3S leaks suggest that, similar to the Quest 3, the new headset will feature 4MP color passthrough cameras with depth perception. Following Meta’s April updates, the Quest 3’s passthrough has become much clearer in low light.

For the Meta Quest 3S price, my best guess is $300, based on its specifications and the Quest 2’s launch price ($299).

A leaked version of Quest 3S from Digital Trends / Image Credits: LufySanKira via Luna

Quest 3S weaknesses

To make the Quest 3S its cheapest VR headset, Meta has reportedly come up with several tactics. The biggest disappointment for VR fans is that the display isn’t that impressive. It has a 1,832 x 1,920 resolution with a fast-switch LCD panel that supports refresh rates up to 120Hz. Besides, the Quest 3S will offer 20 pixels per degree, whereas the Quest 3 has 25 PPD.

Another drawback is that Meta won’t include controllers in the Quest 3S price. Given the reliance on controllers for VR gaming, this means users will need to purchase them separately or wait for a bundled option from Meta.

What’s more? Fresnel lenses are making a comeback, which isn’t the best news. The Meta Quest 3 uses pancake lenses that offer a room-scale experience for your eyes. This means you’re not limited to staring straight ahead through a small eye box. Or turning your head to see around. Instead, you can freely explore the entire field of view, capturing the whole scene with just a glance. When the Quest 3S becomes available, I recommend visiting a demo store to try both out. The quality improvement is so significant for me that I could never return to Fresnel lenses. Keep reading to find out when to expect to get your hands on the Quest 3S.

Quest 3S release date

Meta has announced the official event dates for Connect 2024 (September 25-26, 2024) but details beyond speaker names remain under wraps. Past events have introduced significant updates, such as Meta’s rebranding and the Meta Quest 3.

Looking ahead, Meta’s latest digital innovations, potentially including the Quest 3S, are eagerly anticipated. As a leader in the world’s VR sector, Meta continues to push boundaries. Meanwhile, Apple launched its Vision Pro early in 2024. In response, Meta will aim to solidify its market leadership at Connect by presenting an exceptional and competitive product portfolio.

Do leaks suggest it’s worth buying?

Will the Quest 3S be a major upgrade over the Quest 2? Not quite. If you’re chasing fast, enjoyable VR gaming in the region of $300, Meta’s Quest 2 has been your go-to choice since 2020. However, it’s out of stock on the official Meta website (stock levels started to fall at the beginning of 2024). But, with the Quest 3S, Meta may offer you a solution.

Boasting the same powerful CPU and controllers, the Meta Quest 3S has the brain of Quest 3. While 3S won’t match the same experience, it will appeal to original Meta Quest users disappointed by the retirement of their beloved headset. As we await the big day, check out some products I love from Meta.

Grigor Baklajyan is a copywriter covering technology at Gadget Flow. His contributions include product reviews, buying guides, how-to articles, and more.
Join the Discussion

You Might Also Like

Beatbot AquaSense Pro review: this robotic pool cleaner keeps your water crystal clear

Beatbot AquaSense Pro review: this robotic pool cleaner keeps your water crystal clear

Maintaining my pool daily is a commitment. I spend at least 30 minutes skimming debris and vacuuming before anyone can jump in. Even then, the water can still look slightly off. Thankfully, my Gadget Flow team members found me a..
Unique White Elephant gifts for your next exchange

Unique White Elephant gifts for your next exchange

Whether you call it Dirty Santa, a Yankee Swap, or a White Elephant exchange, the idea is the same: you give a silly—even embarrassing—gift to an unsuspecting recipient that will have everyone in stitches. While these exchanges are known for..
OUTASK Telescopic Lantern review—the most versatile camping light I’ve seen

OUTASK Telescopic Lantern review—the most versatile camping light I’ve seen

When my family and I go camping, a reliable lantern is essential. It illuminates our dining area during meals and helps us navigate our campsite safely at night, among many other uses. That’s why I’m thrilled to introduce a new..
Don’t miss these back-to-school sales for Amazon Prime Day

Don’t miss these back-to-school sales for Amazon Prime Day

Summer is in full swing, but the 2024-2025 school year is on the horizon—at least in the minds of Amazon marketers. Ahead of Prime Day, the world’s largest online marketplace is already offering massive discounts on school supplies. So, check..
The best beer gifts to impress any brew geek

The best beer gifts to impress any brew geek

My family and friends know how much I love beer. I’ve hoarded so many glasses and openers that I don’t know what to do with them all. There are plenty of beer gifts in my collection. However, if someone got..
Unveiling a new era of Galaxy AI at Samsung Galaxy Unpacked 2024

Unveiling a new era of Galaxy AI at Samsung Galaxy Unpacked 2024

After teasing their annual event with exciting billboards, Samsung finally came with their Galaxy Unpacked 2024 event. The event began with an announcement of Galaxy AI being present on 200 million Galaxy devices. In fact, this event highlights how the..