At this point, you might have a pretty good idea of what the inside of a smartphone is like, but how about a highly advanced VR headset? The experts at iFixit have posted their video teardown of Meta’s new Quest Pro, and while they conclude that it’s a “fascinating, if largely unfixable device,” it’s an extremely interesting look at the insides of the high-end VR headset.
One of the first things iFixit digs into is the battery, which lives in the back part of the headset. It’s a twin-cell 20.58Wh battery that’s curved, which is something I don’t think I’ve seen before. It’s a different approach than what Meta took with the Quest 2’s Elite battery strap, which had two connected flat batteries (as shown in this picture from a Redditor).
On the front of the headset, it turns out that the glossy front panel isn’t glass but some “shiny plastic.” After feeling it off, you can see the components, cameras, and circuitry in the front of the device, and it looks cool enough that I wish Meta offered a transparent version of the plastic panel. (Transparent electronics rule, after all.)
iFixit also found a little rectangle in the middle of the Quest Pro that seems to be where a depth sensor would have gone. Mark Zuckerberg told Protocol in May that the Quest Pro, then codenamed Cambria, would have a depth sensor, but the company told UploadVR after the Quest Pro was announced that Zuckerberg was “referring to a different depth sensing system included in a previous prototype version of the device.” Still, it’s interesting to see the open spot in the shipped product.
After unscrewing a lot of screws, iFixit eventually gets to the lenses (also plastic, not glass) and the main board, which includes the new Qualcomm Snapdragon XR2 Plus Gen 1 chip. iFixit also takes apart the controllers, which have their own cameras, thumbsticks like what you’d find on the Nintendo Switch, and lithium-ion batteries rated for 10.85Wh.
The guts of the Quest Pro are certainly impressive, but the device is complicated to take apart. “146 screws, tons of cables, and what at times seemed like a counter-intuitive design made this teardown one of the hardest we’ve done in a long time,” iFixit’s Shahram Mokhtari said in the video. And it doesn’t seem to be very repairable outside of battery replacements.
Still, I love seeing exactly what’s inside the Quest Pro — it’s remarkable how much technology Meta was able to pack into the $1,500 headset. Now the company just needs to figure out the metaverse itself.