Sony’s virtual reality gaming headset could be getting a huge upgrade soon.
The Korean tech giant has applied to patent two new concept devices that many believe could be used to improve its PlayStation VR gaming headset.
In one filing, Sony shows off a concept for a vertical grip controller that has an analog stick and several buttons on the top, as well as a hand strap that provides the user with some added steadiness.
The patent was filed in July 2016, but the filing was just made public earlier this week.
Sony’s next VR controllers? A 2016 patent has just been made public that shows off designs for a motion controller with a thumbstick, buttons and new ‘immersive feedback’ features
The controller also has a trigger on the underside of the device that’s controlled using your index finger.
In perhaps the most exciting feature, the grip has gears that are ‘capable of imparting a tactile sense to a user.’
Though, unlike existing controllers, which can vibrate in response to the user’s touch, Sony’s prototype expands and contracts, providing a more immersive experience.
Another newly public patent, filed in 2017, details new technology that could track a user’s finger and hand placement, just by using a head mounted display.
The current PlayStation VR controls use the PlayStation console’s camera to track the controllers’ position, so the new controller design would likely require a new head mounted display to allow for finger tracking, according to Engadget.
Sony released its PlayStation VR headset in 2016 for £349 ($399) and hasn’t released another iteration since then.
A visitor tries out a Sony’s PlayStation VR headgear device at the Tokyo Game Show in Makuhari, near Tokyo. Unlike the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, PlayStation VR works in unison with a PlayStation 4 console instead of a high-end PC.
Sony’s VR controllers are badly in need of an update.
The Move controllers were first released in 2010, largely in response to the Nintendo Wii, which is widely considered to be the first stab at motion controlled video gaming consoles.
The prototype designs would bring some new, much-needed features to Sony’s motion game controllers.
The expanding grip, which Sony describes as a ‘reaction force generator,’ could make video game play even more realistic.
Sony’s Move motion game controller has become somewhat outdated since its release in 2010. The device was first developed to work with the PlayStation 3, but was later expanded to work with the PlayStation VR headset
By expanding and contracting, the controller would produce different reactions based on whatever object the user picks up.
For example, if a user picks up a stationary object, such as a weapon, the controller would adjust based on the size, according to TechRadar.
If the user picks up a moving object, the controller would be able to give off a response that feels like its moving in your palm.