Beta update fixes stuttering issues for the Oculus Rift

Oculus Rift S
Oculus Rift S (Image credit: Nick Sutrich/Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • Oculus software version 12.1 introduced the bug on its release near the end of December.
  • Users of the Oculus Rift, Oculus Rift S, and Oculus Quest via Oculus Link were all affected.
  • The Public Test Channel is a way for Facebook to release important new patches for users who want to opt into early software releases, but could also introduce other undocumented bugs.

Just in time for the weekend, Oculus has released a beta software update that fixes the stuttering issues users have been facing lately. If you've been having issues with random framerate drops, stuttering games, and unreliable hand tracking, you'll want to download this latest beta software update as soon as possible. Right now, this update only applies to the Oculus Rift and Oculus Rift S. Folks using the Oculus Quest as a Rift (via Oculus Link) will have to wait for a future patch.

To enroll in the beta, open the Oculus software on your PC, navigate to Settings on the left-hand menu, and click on the slider next to Public Test Channel to enroll in the beta update. You may need to restart your Oculus software in order to apply the update. You'll then see a banner at the top of the Oculus software that indicates the update is ready, and it'll take a few moments of your time to go through the process.

Enrolling in Oculus Public Test Channel betas

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

Right around Christmas time, Oculus released the 12.1 software update for the Rift platform, but inadvertently also introduced a performance-killing bug. That bug caused VR games on many systems to experience framerate drops and unreliable hand tracking, rendering the experience extremely unpleasant at best, and unplayable at worst. The bug was acknowledged after several weeks of posts on Reddit and around the web, and Oculus has been extremely quick to turnaround a fix for the problem.

This patch is great news for owners of the Oculus Rift and Oculus Rift S who have, no doubt, been experiencing issues for the past few weeks and haven't been able to identify a solution. Public software updates are usually delivered after a round of testing through the beta channel, so if you're not willing to download early release software, you'll likely only have a few more days until a final version is released automatically.

Nicholas Sutrich

Nick started with DOS and NES and uses those fond memories of floppy disks and cartridges to fuel his opinions on modern tech. Whether it's VR, smart home gadgets, or something else that beeps and boops, he's been writing about it since 2011. Reach him on Twitter or Instagram @Gwanatu