updated 09:50 am EDT, Sat April 14, 2007
Sony VR Game Controller
Sony has potentially shown the future of its PlayStation's game mechanics through a new patent in the US. Titled only "Hand-held computer interactive device," the technology would serve to bring the concepts behind more recent virtual reality gloves to a gaming audience. While the glove as a whole would sense movement and could be used to replicate controllers like Sony's own SIXAXIS for the PS3 or Nintendo's Wii remote, individual sensors in the fingers and thumb could tell when the player is gripping an object or making a gesture. The glove itself would offer some resistance and could also vibrate individual points to simulate touch. Wireless would be used to ensure complete freedom of movement, Sony says.
Curiously, the patent was originally filed in December 2006 -- months before Sony had struck a deal with force-feedback company Immersion to allow the use of vibration in Sony's gamepads. Although this initial legal hurdle suggests that Sony's initial patent was purely speculative, its appearance just after the launch of the PS3 reveals a hope to introduce a version of the patented glove mechanism during the Blu-Ray game console's lifetime. [via Unwired View]