Sony has been linked to a brand new PS4 VR design that would make its PlayStation virtual reality experience even better.
More evidence is being found online that Sony is working on a big PSVR upgrade. And the good news is that current PS4 gamers could still benefit.
We already know that Sony is busy working on PlayStation’s next-gen console strategy, which will start with the release of the PS5 in 2020.
So far, we don’t know exactly is being planned for PSVR in the future but an upgrade is expected.
This would probably mean buying a new PSVR headset, although the original design has been confirmed as compatible with the upcoming PS5 console.
Sony has also confirmed that they won’t be launching a new headset alongside the PS5 in 2020.
And fans believe they may have spotted what could be a future announcement from the tech giant.
In a post by SegmentNext, a new patent has been shared that links Sony with new eye-tracking tech.
This would make it possible to make eye contact with someone during a virtual reality session to launch a private chat option.
It’s unclear at this point what kind of upgrade would be needed to make eye-tracking a standard feature in PSVR.
The patent reportedly reads: “Player-to-player eye contact (300) is used to establish (308) a private chat channel in an augmented reality (AR) or virtual reality (VR) setting.
“Since maintaining eye contact requires agreement from both parties, it allows both players an equal amount of control when performing the mutual action.
“Eye-tracking may be used for determining (300) whether mutual eye contact has been established. In the case of AR, “inside out” eye tracking can be used, whereas in a VR setting only inside eye-tracking need be used.
“Techniques are described (e.g., 318) to confirm and establish a channel once eye contact has been held.”
And what’s interesting is that Sony has already confirmed that they are interested in bringing eye-tracking to its PSVR experience.
Speaking to CNET in 2019, PlayStation’s Global Head of R&D Dominic Mallinson revealed how eye-tracking could work with PSVR.
“That’s the one that excites me the most… I think there will come a point in time in the not too distant future when you cannot launch a VR headset without eye tracking,” he told CNET.
“It could have practical benefits, too: eye tracking can help reduce graphics load to make games perform better via a technique called foveated rendering, which could help a game console perform more like a high-end PC.
“It’s a win-win in that respect, For me, it’s a pretty obvious technology.”
In the same interview, Mallinson also commented on Sony’s next console strategy and how a new PSVR headset would not be needed at launch.
“There’s no reason for us to coincide it with a new console,” He added.
“From the point of view of the consumer, to be bombarded with many many things — oh, you have to buy this, you have to buy that — is a message that we don’t want to send. In some ways, it’s good to have a little breathing space between those things.”
PS4 VR fans will also be excited to find out what kind of news will be shared during CES 2020.
The tech expo kicks off this week and Sony will be hosting its own conference covering some big hardware news.
A new message on the Sony CES website reads: “The future is coming – At CES 2020 Sony is unveiling a unique vision of the future, bringing creativity and technology together like never before, to unleash new sensations and emotions.”
The Sony CES presentation will be held on January 6th at 5 pm PST in the United States, or 1am if you live in the UK.