A new generation of PlayStation VR hardware, including a new controller designed specifically for VR, will come to the PlayStation 5 sometime later this year, Sony announced today.
The short message is light for details and does not include photos or prototypes of the new headphones or controller. But there it is mentioned that the next PlayStation VR will include a higher resolution and field of view than the original from 2016, which is stuck in a certain resolution of 1920×1080.
As a context, last year’s $ 299 Oculus Quest 2 came with a total resolution of 3664×1600 and it’s for unattached standalone headphones with much less horsepower than the PS5. Valve’s high-end headphones, meanwhile, have a 135-degree field of view, much wider than ~ 100 degrees on the PSVR (cheaper modern headphones typically have closer to 90 to 100-degree field of view).
In addition to redesigned ergonomics, Sony says the next PSVR controller “will include some of the key features found in the DualSense wireless controller.” These can include precision haptics, variable stability triggers and distinct built-in speakers that have already been used to great effect in some standard PS5 games.
This would be a big step up from the PlayStation Move controllers that many PSVR games currently use for manual tracking. They were originally released in 2010, long before consumer VR was a problem, and are generally seen as a more accurate response to the Nintendo Wii and Xbox Kinect manual removal controls for flat-screen gaming. A controller specifically designed for VR can improve accuracy or even eliminate the need for an external tracking camera.
Existing PlayStation VR owners can currently use the headphones and controllers with the PlayStation 5, but this requires a special adapter to connect the aging PS4 camera (PS5’s own “PlayStation HD camera” is not compatible with the current PlayStation VR). Ars’ own testing at system startup also found that PSVR games did not typically receive a noticeable boom in PS5 fidelity, as did some others compatible with reverse games.
Before today, Sony did not want to comment very directly on the future of PS5 virtual reality hardware. PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan told The Washington Post back in October that “PlayStation believes in VR. Sony believes in VR and we definitely believe at some point in the future, VR will be a significant component of interactive entertainment. this year? No. Will it be next year? No. But will it come at some stage? We believe in that. “
Sony has sold over 5 million PlayStation VR headsets since 2016, after going through 4.2 million sales in early 2019. This makes the PSVR one of the best-selling VR headsets overall so far, despite obsolete hardware in recent months. was heavily sold by Oculus’ standalone Quest headphones, according to analyst firm Superdata.