A new patent from Sony shows that the company is looking into some major changes to the overall design of their PS VR headsets for the next generation. Sony launched the first PS VR models back in 2016, and since then they've become the market leader among competitors like Oculus and HTC Vive. The PS5 will still support current VR models, which are notably weaker than the previously mentioned competitor headsets, so it makes sense that the company would want to pair a powerful new console with a new and improved VR headset.
Sony jumped into the VR market with the most consumer-friendly pricing, meaning gamers who weren't as interested in paying a premium price for more PC-centric headsets could jump in with a more inexpensive device and still have access to a large portion of the best VR games available, albeit at a lower quality. Another major issue with VR headsets and Sony's, in particular, is the amount of space required to set up the device. There's a hefty amount of wires going to and from the headset, and even more that are attached to the television as well as the PS4 console.
In a report from Inverse, a patent application published by USPTO gives some major details on what consumers can expect from the new device. The most notable new feature is that the headset itself will be wireless, so PlayStation fans won't have to worry about filling up their play space with wire clutter. This also allows for more comfort and fewer distractions when in-game. According to the patent, the headset will also offer 2,560-by-1,440 resolution as well as a 120-hertz refresh rate. The original PS VR used some tricks to present games at 120-hertz, so it seems the new headset offers it natively.
Some other small tidbits of information include a $250 price point, 220-degree field of view, five hours of battery life, and eye-tracking support. Additionally, the headset will seemingly have new technology that uses gyro sensors and acceleration to better track where the user's head is and what exactly it is they're looking at in-game. On the graphical side of things, a new rendering capability known as foveated rendering would allow the headset to focus on displaying high-quality graphics while putting less stress on the console's new GPU. It works by greatly improving the image the player is looking at while rendering whatever isn't being viewed at a lower quality. Overall, each of these new additions goes a long way in making the VR experience that much better.
It doesn't seem at all surprising that Sony's looking into new VR technology. Given their status and reputation in the current market, it's almost expected for them to capitalize on providing a new consumer-friendly headset with their upcoming console. Especially given that the internal hardware that was once more expensive has cheapened over time. Still, it's nice that those who jumped into VR with PS4 early on will still be able to use their headsets and play all of their games. With all the new improvements, the next PS VR headset will make for a great pairing with Sony's long-awaited PS5.