With the life cycles of PS4 and PS4 Pro officially coming to an end, and Sony confirming the details of PS5, we can not help but wonder what Sony has as a successor to PlayStation VR. Could it be PSVR 2?
Sony technically launched a second PSVR headset in 2017: the CUH-ZVR2 Added support for HDR, integrated headphones and a smaller connection cable. But, the true PSVR 2.0 will have a much greater jump in the specifications that will take advantage of the next generation hardware to increase its resolution, pixel quality and frequency of update.
The main question is whether the PlayStation VR 2 will simply enhance the images of its predecessor, or add features such as 6DoF tracking or even connect wirelessly to compete with Oculus Rift Y HTC Vive?
We have the latest rumors and industry insiders on how the PlayStation VR 2 could be, its likely release date, its possible backward compatibility and much more.
Come to the point
- What is it? The next version of PlayStation VR
- When is it out? Potentially 2020 or 2021 to coincide with the release of PS5
- How much will it cost? TBC – probably around the $ 499 launch price of the PSVR
Release date of PSVR 2
It is almost certain that PSVR 2 will work exclusively with the PlayStation 5, but probably we will not see the PlayStation of the next generation until at least the middle of 2020.
Without an official word yet on the launch date of PlayStation 5, it is difficult to determine exactly when we can see a PS5 or PSVR 2 console, although Sony has confirmed that we will not see the PS5 in 2019.
If Sony allocates most of its human resources to the production of PS5, then PSVR 2 could be released much later than the release date of the console, maybe a year or more. PlayStation VR was released three years after the PS4, after all.
However, Siliconera discovered two new presentations related to Sony's virtual reality headsets that could indicate the kind of experiences the company is planning for the future. The couple showed up in 2017 and 2018, respectively, suggesting that (if Sony has pursued them) they could soon bear fruit.
The first is related to live events. The Sony patent describes a scenario in which a user attends a real-world location, such as a sports stadium, with the handset "anchoring" to a physical location on the spot. "
They would be surrounded by assistants from the real world, allowing them to see the event as if they were really there. It sounds similar to other live VR applications, such as Next VR, Melody VR or Oculus Venues.
More interesting, then, is the second application. This talks about converting friends from your list of PSN games into viewers of your games while you play. Therefore, instead of crowds of generic NPCs in the stands of a FIFA match or on the track of a Gran Turismo race, your friends might choose to have an avatar representation of themselves in your game.
These avatars can be true to life, or any type of stylized representation they choose to send. They could choose to visualize in real time in virtual reality or show their support through a "preprogrammed" clip.
The fact that Sony has already applied for these patents suggests that PSVR 2 could be closer than we thought …
PSVR 2 news and rumors.
PlayStation VR 2 could fuel the future of Gran Turismo
In a round-table interview with GT Planet, the creator of the Gran Turismo series, Kazunori Yamauchi, revealed that when it comes to harnessing the power of next-generation consoles, Polyphony Digital's focus is mainly on virtual reality.
"The first thing that will be affected by more power is virtual reality," Yamauchi told GT Planet. "I do not think there's anything else that requires so much processing capacity, I really like VR, I'm one of those who believe in the possibilities and it's very suitable for a driving game."
As Gran Turismo is an exclusive series of PlayStation, it is likely that the future of the racing franchise will be driven by PlayStation VR and its likely successor: PlayStation VR 2.
While Sony has not officially confirmed that PSVR 2 is in development, Yamauchi's comments suggest that the company will rely on virtual reality to a large extent when it comes to the next PS5.
"Virtual reality is something that really depends on the evolution of the GPU's power, and the hardware for it, like the visualization devices," Yamauchi continued. "It's something where you can never have enough computing power – there will always be that hardware limit, and that limit will never be high enough for us! Obviously, that will gradually improve over time and we'll make sure to follow that."
The current PSVR headphones will work with the PS5
The first details about the PS5 came in early 2019, and they brought with them the confirmation that their current PlayStation VR headsets will work with the next generation console.
Speaking with Wired, Mark Cerny (chief systems architect at Sony who works on the next console) confirmed that all existing versions of PlayStation VR will be compatible with the next generation console.
Currently it is not clear if there will be a new PlayStation VR 2 at the launch. Cerny said: "I will not go into the details of our virtual reality strategy today."
While he did not say that Sony will not update its virtual reality headsets at the launch of the next-generation console, he hastened to clarify that it's worth buying an existing PSVR if you do not already have it.
He also said: "Virtual reality is very important to us and the current PSVR headset is compatible with the new console."
Compatible with previous versions
PlayStation 4 games are also set to be compatible with PlayStation 5, so we can expect you to be able to change your existing PSVR catalog to the next console.
Good news for glasses users?
According to the published patent (detected by Subida VR), Sony is working on "prescription glasses with visual tracking and electro-optical signaling to an HMD".
These prescription glasses developed by Sony would be customized for the user and the look could be detected by the VR headset through a coded sensor. In other words, eyewear users could use virtual reality much easier. We do not expect these glasses to be cheap, but the implementation of the eye-looking software means that we can probably expect them to reach the PSVR 2 …
Price of PSVR 2
The current PlayStation VR startup package sells for $ 200 / £ 259 / AU $ 420, but this affordable cost came after several price declines.
The original price for a complete package, $ 499 (£ 399, approximately AU $ 650), could give us a good idea of what Sony will charge for the PSVR 2 handset.
Of course, this new handset will have a potentially expensive technology to go with the increased potential of the PS5.
Japan Display (JDI), a manufacturer of LCD screens from Sony, recently introduced its 3.2-inch, 1,001-pixel (ppi) screens with a resolution of 2160 x 2432. PSVR currently uses a resolution of 386 ppi and 1920 x 1080 for its 5.7-inch screen.
Adding better viewing quality, as well as doubling the screen count, could increase the price.
Currently, the only "next generation" VR headset on the market is the HTC Vive Pro, which sells for $ 800, £ 800 or around AU $ 1,045. Depending on the PSVR 2 hardware, Sony may choose to include it as a premium device.
But, that would probably go against your brand offering an affordable entry in VR. We hope that Sony will avoid setting prices for everyone except the richest of virtual reality.
We also saw a patent for improved motion control wands with finger tracking and haptic feedback.
The higher cost PSVR 2 packages may very well include these drivers for virtual reality experiences that a DualShock controller can not provide.
Why be an exclusive PlayStation 5?
Owners of PlayStation 4 (especially Pro owners) may feel a bit annoyed when they discover that they can not make PSVR 2 work on their consoles.
But, it could be Sony's only option to make his second handset truly feel next generation.
We tested PSVR on the PS4 and compared the graphic quality with the Pro. In the "Pro Mode", we saw minor improvements in the textures, the granulation and the reduction of the delay. Ultimately, however, the difference did not feel so momentous.
While the PS4 Pro certainly has a big impact, it may not have the ability to support VR with the higher pixel resolution and density that the new Sony JDI displays allow.
The PSVR 2 could demand a processing power that the latest generation consoles simply can not match.
The PlayStation 5 will use the newest one. CPU AMD Ryzen and upgraded Radeon graphics, an update to the AMD Jaguar CPU on the PS4 and Pro. Sony may have trouble making its new headphones compatible with two separate graphics systems.
All updated hardware, design and accessories.
The most concrete information we have about what PSVR 2 could be capable of comes from JDI's announcement of its 3.2-inch screen with a resolution of 1,001ppi and 2160 x 2432.
JDI says that this screen will reduce latency to 2.2 msec (compared to> 18 ms today), will allow 120 Hz (same as PSVR 1) and will require less processing power to achieve better image quality; possibly unlock a lighter and smaller design for the headphones.
The improved AMD Ryzen chip that Sony is implementing on the PS5 could certainly achieve the processing power needed to support these screens.
Sony, that use the JDI screens For your smartphones, it is very likely that you will depend on these improved screens for your new headphones. Considering that the design of the PSVR 1 is already comfortable for long periods of play, this could make your heir even more pleasant to use.
Of course, if the PlayStation VR 2 goes with dual screens, this will make the graphic demand of the headphones much harder to achieve. For example, if Sony wanted 4K VR, then the PS5 would have to be able to transmit 8K, which will be.
We suspect that the PSVR 2 could be wireless, considering that Sony prioritized the reduction of the size and weight of the cable that connects the headset to the console in its PSVR 1 to get betterIt is clear that the company sees it as something disruptive, even annoying. Removing it completely is the next logical step.
In doing so, Sony will also provide room tracking support for PSVR 2. Oculus and HTC have supported 6DoF experience tracking for a couple of years, and it is one of the main areas in which PSVR does not reach the competition.
The PlayStation camera keeps track of the controller's head and movements while you're playing while you're sitting, but you can not keep track if you move, and our reviewers discovered that it often lost track of the controller even when it was motionless.
Adding support for room tracking will only help Sony increase the size of its game library, since it will support more experiences based on walking around a room.
Of course, this could mean that the new PSVR 2 package will include a pair of room sensors to increase camera tracking.
However, Sony could take the route that Lenovo made with the Mirage Solo headset, which adds WorldSense tracking technology inside the headset itself. Reducing the number of peripherals could make the experience less expensive to configure.
We also suspect that Sony has plans to duplicate the Move controls. A patent shows that you want to compete with the Oculus Touch and Vive controllers by adding improved tracking functionality to your Move wands.
The most promising idea of Sony is its "reaction force generator", which would have parts of the Move wand expand or contract based on what the user is currently "holding" in the game.
This technology could make the experiences feel more immersive than before, without having to completely renounce the controllers (see: Oculus haptic gloves).
In addition, according to another published patent (detected by Subida VR), Sony is working on "prescription glasses with visual tracking and electro-optical signaling to an HMD".
These prescription glasses developed by Sony would be customized for the user and the look could be detected by the VR headset through a coded sensor. In other words, eyewear users could use virtual reality much easier. We do not expect these glasses to be cheap, but the implementation of the eye-looking software means that we can probably expect them to reach the PSVR 2.
PSVR 2: just what the VR industry needs?
As mentioned, PlayStation VR has not met Sony's sales expectations, but its sales are not negligible compared to the competition of high-end VR headphones, but Sony had expected all VR market to grow.
Instead, Sony is likely to worry that virtual reality is too niche to get the benefits that the company once hoped for. Kodera said Sony would have a "more realistic perspective" on what kind of future sales it can expect.
Kodera's statement implies that Sony remains committed to the production of more virtual reality devices. Unfortunately, the lukewarm virtual reality market could mean that Sony spends less time and money on future virtual reality experiences.
But, ideally, the PlayStation VR 2 and other next generation headphones with better specifications and fewer cables could revitalize the market and keep Sony completely on board with virtual reality.