D-Link officially announced VR Air Bridge, a dedicated USB dongle for Quest 2 wireless PC VR.
The existing Air Link is a Quest feature that lets the device act as a wireless PC VR headset via your Wi-Fi network. It was shipped as a software update in early 2021, but third-party alternatives like Virtual Desktop and ALVR have been available since the release of the original Quest headset in mid-2019.
Using your home Wi-Fi network rather than a dedicated dongle presents several issues though. The signal can be degraded by the distance to the router or obstacles like solid walls, and frames can be dropped or delivered late if too many other devices are congesting the network. Before Air Link was even announced, “Consulting CTO” John Carmack floated the idea of a Wi-Fi dongle running custom firmware for wireless VR.
The spec sheet shows VR Air Bridge connects to Quest 2 via Wi-Fi 6, and to the PC via USB 3.2 Gen 1. It creates a “high-throughput and low-latency dedicated point-to-point Wi-Fi link”, avoiding network congestion and signal propagation issues.
D-Link took a direct shot at Virtual Desktop in its marketing materials, with an image captioned ‘Sharing isn’t always caring’ depicting poor signal quality on a congested network. Developer Guy Godin responded on Twitter by pointing out that his app “showed [Meta] wireless PCVR was viable in the first place”.
No price or launch date was announced, but Meta’s annual AR/VR event takes place on October 11th.