Facebook now lets you say ‘Hey Facebook’ to your Oculus and Portal for voice commands

An interesting update, for sure.

If you’ve ever wanted to yell at the social media network founded by Mark Zuckerberg and make it do something for you, today’s your lucky day.

Now rolling out to its Quest VR headset, Oculus now lets you say “Hey Facebook” to control your device with your voice. It’s hidden in the Experimental Features panel, however, and will be completely optional, so you’ll be able to stick with “Hey Oculus” if you want.

Starting this week, we’ll begin rolling out “Hey Facebook” to people using Quest 2. This will be a gradual rollout, but you can find and enable the wake word via our Experimental Features settings—and then say “Hey Facebook, take a screenshot,” “Hey Facebook, show me who’s online,” “Hey Facebook, open Supernatural,” or any of our other voice commands to get started. Note that Quest doesn’t listen for the “Hey Facebook” wake word when the microphone is turned off, or when the headset is asleep or powered down.

“Hey Facebook” is a strictly opt-in experience. You can still use Voice Commands without the wake word, via the existing button in the Home menu or by double pressing the Oculus controller button. And opting in isn’t a permanent decision either. You can easily turn off “Hey Facebook” in the same Experimental Features panel.

The same feature should also be rolling out to Facebook’s Portal devices. I say “should” because while Facebook lists the voice command as a new alternative to “Hey Portal” on its website, it isn’t clear if the feature’s actually reaching users just yet.

I will say, I’m not sure which phrase I like more. I probably wouldn’t mind saying “Hey Portal” or “Hey Oculus”, but saying “Hey Facebook” doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue. Of course, neither does “Hey Google”, but there’s definitely something different about saying ‘Hey Facebook.” Maybe it’s because it reminds you of everything Facebook owns.

Regardless, expect to see this phrase on more products from Facebook. I have a feeling it’s the new way you’ll interact with voice-operated products from the company.

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