The Oculus Rift S represents some of the absolute best hardware in the VR space. It’s got cutting-edge next-generation lens technology, a display with less of that annoying “screen door effect”, and a new inside-out tracking method that enables roomscale VR without the hassle of installing and configuring external cameras or sensors. It’s also been pretty buggy from the get-go, but Oculus has been hard at work fixing these bugs and has announced a fix is coming soon for folks dealing with the dreaded blinking screen problem.
Oculus developers are feverishly working on a firmware update that’s set to fix this problem, and it looks like it could come as soon as the next public beta channel (PTC) release, which would presumably be firmware 1.40. Currently, firmware 1.39 is in the PTC and has significantly improved the inside-out tracking capabilities on the Rift S.
Described as something like a “data glitch” by many users on Reddit, the screen on the Oculus Rift S will occasionally flash for a brief second and create a jarring effect. This screen flash looks like it was straight ripped from a Hollywood movie where someone is hacking into a computer and the end-user sees a weird pattern appear on their display for a brief moment. While there’s no hacking going on or other nefarious deeds happening, it’s still a glitch that has been bugging users since the launch of the headset in May.
To make sure you get this new firmware first, you’ll need to enroll in the public beta channel within the Oculus Home software. To do this, navigate to settings on the left menu, click on the beta tab up top, and then click the toggle switch to opt into the latest PTC beta. At the time of this writing, the PTC beta was firmware version 1.39. You’ll be asked to update the firmware for your headset and likely your controllers as well, which will take a few minutes to download and apply.
The Oculus team at Facebook has done a truly excellent job of fixing the issues with the Rift S since launch, and thus far there have been four major complaints. Initial reviews spoke of weak speakers and some display issues, including black screens and other oddities. Those were both fixed in the late-May PTC of firmware 1.38, and the final release of firmware 1.38 to the public in June also fixed issues with Nvidia Turing cards that suffered from framerate issues due to Asynchronous Timewarp (ASW) functionality.
This fourth glitch is said to only be affecting a small number of Oculus Rift S users, but anecdotal evidence from forums seems to suggest otherwise. Any quick search on Reddit or the official Oculus Rift S forum will bring back a significant number of results for people that are experiencing issues with the screen glitching, flashing white, or anything similar in description to that.
It’s great to see them handling these issues in such a timely manner, and making sure that users are aware these bugs are being fixed. Any product launch is met with bugs once the public gets ahold of them, especially on a PC platform, since there are so many different variables when it comes to versions of Windows, drivers, hardware, etc.