Updated: Jul 27, 2022
Welcome to our first ever Tutorial Tuesday post! Today, we are going to be going over how to access Sidequest applications from your Meta Quest 2 devices. So what exactly is Sidequest and why should you want to access their applications? Sidequest is essentially the alternative Quest store, meaning applications that fail to be listed on the Oculus Quest store may apply to be listed there.
There is always an influx of new applications, as the registration process is much easier with Sidequest, so developers tend to publish there first to draw an interest to their titles during alpha and beta phases (although App Lab is being used more for that now-a-days). Even so, there are plenty of great free and paid applications that you can only get from the Sidequest marketplace, which is why you will want to tune in to the next few paragraphs.
To gain access to Sidequest, there are a number of steps to accomplish on both the Oculus side and the Sidequest side. Let's start with Sidequest, since it is the easiest portion. Head over to the Sidequest website (https://sidequestvr.com/) and download their windows only (for now) application (once at their website navigate to the 'Get Sidequest' tab). Once you have the application downloaded and installed on your windows machine go ahead and pat yourself on the back, because you just finished the Sidequest portion of the setup.
Moving on to the Oculus portion, the first thing you are going to want to do is register for a Developer account, if you haven't already done that (https://developer.oculus.com/sign-up/). Once you have the developer account set up, head to the Oculus companion app on your phone. In the application, select 'MENU' on the far right hand corner of the bottom navigation menu, select 'DEVICES', and beneath 'HEADSET SETTINGS' select 'DEVELOPER MODE' to toggle on the developer mode option.
You can verify that it has worked by closing the Oculus companion application and reopening and navigating to the same option to ensure it remains checked. Failure to register for a Developer account before attempting this step will cause the option to be unchecked when you reload the application or you will not even be able to toggle the button (experience varies based on OS version). Congratulations, go ahead and give yourself another pat on the back, because you just finished the Oculus setup procedure.
So how do you access those sweet and salty applications on Sidequest? Well, open up the windows application and browse around until you find that perfect app. Connect your headset to the windows machine via usb (ensure you authorize USB DEBUGGING from the headset pop-up once you have it plugged in, yes it is annoying to put the headset on again but it is required) and at the top right of the Sidequest app you will see an option for installing the application you downloaded. Pat yourself on the back for a third and final time, because you just accessed a Sidequest application on your Quest 2! Tune in next time for another quick XR tutorial.