With the new generation VR and MR headsets from Meta and Pico in the form of the Pico 4 and Meta Quest Pro entering the market. We thought it to be a perfect time to compare and analyze the key differences between the Pico 4 vs the Quest Pro to help you decide which to buy and why you would purchase either.
We will go through:
|Pico 4||Meta Quest Pro|
|Best price to quality ratio for standalone VR headsets||AI-powered body tracking|
|Native fitness application||16 integrated cameras|
|Wired streaming solution|
|Mixed reality capabilities|
|Pico 4||Meta Quest Pro|
|Requires external trackers for body tracking||Expensive|
|No wired streaming only wireless||Requires a Meta account|
|No mixed reality capabilities||No native fitness integrations|
The table below lists a specifications comparison of both devices.
|Pico 4||Meta Quest Pro|
|Resolution||2160 x 2160 pixels per eye||1800 × 1920 pixels per eye|
|Refresh rate||72/90 Hz||72/90Hz|
|Pixels per inch||1200 Pixels Per Inch||Estimated 900 Pixels Per Inch|
|Visible Field of View||105°||106°|
|Processor||Qualcomm Snapdragon XR2||Qualcomm Snapdragon XR2+|
|Weight||295 grams||722 grams|
|Storage (ROM)||128 GB / 256 GB||256 GB|
|RAM||8 GB||12 GB|
|Tracking||Inside-Out 6DoF with 5 integrated cameras with hand, face, and eye tracking||Inside-Out 6DoF with 16 integrated cameras with hand, face, and eye tracking|
|Battery life||3 hours||1-2 hours|
|Price||€429 (128 GB)€499 (256 GB)||$1500/€1800|
The new headsets from Pico and Meta have seen a major design evolution thanks to the integration of Pancake lenses. Thanks to this evolution in lens technology both the Quest Pro and Pico 4 headsets are now only ⅓ as thick as their predecessors the Pico Neo 3 Link and Oculus Quest 2.
Pico has been a pioneer of placing the battery of their devices in the rear part of the head strap. This is no different in the Pico 4 and has always provided their devices with great weight distribution making the devices comfortable for extended periods of play. In comparison the Quest Pro looks to have also adopted this philosophy of placing the battery within the head strap to improve weight balance. It is important to mention though that this idea was also used by Microsoft in the Hololens 2, years ago.
The Quest Pro and Pico 4 have both been fitted with a fit wheel on the back to adjust the fit of the device. This allows for a better fit to be found much faster and easily as it can be done with the headset on your head. The Pico 4 does differ from the Quest Pro due to the addition of a top velcro strap which is not found on the Quest Pro.
The most obvious difference is the color, with Pico choosing for a mostly white design with a shiny finished black front panel. While the Meta has gone for a blacked out design more reminiscent of the Oculus Rift S or original Oculus Quest color combination.
Overall the devices both look comfortable to wear due to the new displays reducing the devices weights and even weight distributions with the only difference being the top strap on the Pico 4 which will likely give it a slightly better fit. However, the significant weight difference between the two headsets of 295 grams for Pico 4 and 722 grams for Meta Quest Pro, makes Pico 4 more comfortable to wear during extended use.
If you are confused by all the terms and abbreviations in this article, we got your back with this article: The ultimate VR glossary of words, terms and acronyms.
Meta Quest Pro displays will have dual LCD displays with a resolution of 1800×1920 per eye and a variable refresh rate between 72/90Hz. This is lower than the resolution on Pico 4, which will come with 2.56-inch LCD displays and 2160 x 2160 pixels per eye. In fact, the pixel density on Meta Quest Pro is about 25% lower than Pico 4 based on the similar field of view.
Quest Pro will feature eye tracking, which means it is likely that dynamic foveated rendering will be integrated- vastly improving the visual clarity. The Pico 4 also comes with eye-tracking allowing for dynamic foveated rendering.
Both headsets will be standalone featuring inside-out tracking from integrated cameras. The Pico 4 has been equipped with 5 cameras, this is broken down into 4 fisheye cameras located on the top and bottom corners of the headset, as well as one on the front panel. The front panel camera is not a fisheye camera it is a 16MP RGB Camera which allows for high quality color passthrough capabilities.
As of now, we don’t know the size of the tracking zone of Quest Pro, while the Pico 4 offers tracking for an area of 10×10 meters. The Pico 4’s tracking is excellent and is on par with the Oculus Quest 2.
Until the Quest Pro is officially launched on the 25th of October 2022 it is difficult to state how good the tracking will be. Considering the Quest Pro is expected to be equipped with a total of 16 tracking cameras and knowing how good the previous Meta devices have been it is likely that the Quest Pro will have superior tracking. Along with the tracking it will also include color passthrough capabilities, enabling mixed reality.
The Pico 4 will feature hand tracking, face tracking and eye tracking. Comparably, the Quest Pro also offers hand tracking, face tracking and eye tracking, with AI-powered body tracking for realistic mimicking of virtual avatars.
Nevertheless, Pico 4 will come with built-in hand tracking that we have yet to test to determine its quality. With Quest Pro being a premium device, the headset will come with 16 total tracking cameras. This means that hands, body, face, and eyes will be tracked on the Quest Pro.
For overall tracking the Quest Pro will likely have the edge over the Pico 4. When it comes to social VR which is a huge focus for Meta for the metaverse the Quest Pro will have the edge over the Pico 4 as it will allow for more gestures and realism to be added to your avatars through the added body tracking. However the need for 16 cameras to do this tracking is something that is not necessary for a truly immersive VR experience to occur.
The main difference between the controllers on Quest Pro and Pico 4 is that the Quest Pro controllers will have six infrared tracking cameras installed on them. While the controllers also will have a Qualcomm System-on-Chip and a rechargeable 3,200 mAH battery. In other words, the quality of tracking on the Quest Pro controllers will be better and more stable.
Aside from that, both controllers offer 6DoF tracking, with the Pico 4 controllers having a more comfortable form and button arrangement.
Furthermore, the Quest Pro controllers will mirror the innovative PlayStation Sense controllers and feature localized haptics in each button and palm rest. All in all, the Quest Pro controllers outshine the Pico 4 controllers.
The only way to connect Pico 4 with SteamVR to access its library of over 4000+ titles is by using a wireless WiFi 6 connection dongle, which may present difficulties. This is because the displayport input has been removed from the Pico 4. If however, it is of importance to have wired-streaming the Pico Neo 3 Link or Quest 2 remain good options. However, the WiFi 6 capabilities of the Pico 4 should be more than able to stream 4K, 90 Hz content to a screen.
Regarding the Quest Pro the streaming options are not fully clear yet but considering the success of the Quest Link it is likely there will be a wired streaming option and most definitely a wireless streaming option. The quality of which will be to the standard found on the Quest 2 headsets
The largest library of VR content and games is SteamVR. However, the Pico Store has increased the types of content it offers, which is beginning to equal what is offered on the Meta / Oculus Store. Both headsets will be able to access SteamVR and their own native app store. Each platform has a number of exclusive titles which may sway your choice.
The main difference will be the extra layers of immersion that will be possible with the devices on the existing content stores. For example how will the high level tracking including of users bodies by the Quest Pro differentiate Metas Horizon Worlds social VR platform to Pico Worlds which will only be able to use body tracking through extra accessories or external trackers.
Pico has however shown a keen focus on the fitness sector launching its own native fitness application. Which is not included in the native OS of Meta to this point.
So which headset you choose is really dependent on what games you want and the capabilities you want out of your headset.
Both headsets are standalone and the companies making them are well known for the easy and hassle free setup they offer. Both companies offer a companion app to make installation and setup even easier.
Both require the creation of Pico or Meta account to download and install applications. It must be said that Meta has an imperfect reputation in regard to the collection of data and how they use it, so be aware of this fact.
The only unknown is how the mixed reality functionalities of the Quest Pro could add extra steps in the setup process increasing the time from opening the box to playing on it.
The price is one of the biggest differences between the devices. The Pico 4 comes in two variants of 128 GB with a cost of 429 euros and 256 GB with a cost of 499 euros. The Quest Pro with 256 GB, targeting enterprises, will cost 1800 euros. A significant difference that shows the difference in markets the two headsets are aimed at making Quest Pro compete with HTC and Varjo.
The difference in price is mainly for the added capabilities in the realms of mixed reality, high fidelity tracking as well as its innovative body tracking technology in the Quest Pro.
In conclusion when comparing the Pico 4 vs the Quest Pro, the decision on which to buy is simply a question of what you want out of the device. To make it easy to decide I created some categories to help you choose for yourself.
I want the most advanced standalone VR headset
If you simply want the most advanced standalone VR headset on the market the Quest Pro is your answer
I want the best all round standalone VR headset in terms of price and quality
If you want the best standalone VR headset that has top of the line specifications for a good price then the Pico 4 is the answer
I want more than just a standalone VR headset
If you want more than just a standalone VR headset but still with the VR capabilities then the Quest Pro is your way forward due to its mixed reality capabilities and extensive tracking.
I have a Oculus Quest 2 and want to upgrade my device for better tracking and the improved form factors
If you want to get the latest generation devices because your old device is breaking down or needs an upgrade then I recommend the Pico 4 with its improved tracking, comfort and the pancake lens optics.
Jakob Pii is Writer at VR Expert and currently lives in the UK. He started his career in VR gaming in 2015 and has stayed in XR since, from exposure therapy in VR to 360-degree video documentaries. He is fascinated by how emerging technologies change how we live, play and work.