Following a long list of rumours, CES 2022 saw the official announcement of Sony’s upcoming next-gen hardware aimed at creating virtual reality experiences. Dubbed ‘Playstation VR2,’ the device is expected to take VR gaming to the next level, “enabling a greater sense of presence” and overall immersion. The company also introduced the new controller, which features a similar naming scheme as its PS5 counterpart – PS VR2 Sense.
Playstation VR2 release date
Sony had confirmed via a blog post in February, last year, to be developing the PS VR2, and that it won’t see a 2021 launch. Sony did not share an official release date during CES 2022 either, though a Bloomberg report points towards a Holiday launch.
Hardware analyst Brad Lynch also confirmed that the units are entering mass production soon, under Chinese manufacturer, Goertek. The dates could still be subject to delay, though, taking into account the global chip shortages, which is already causing Sony to struggle with the Playstation 5 sales.
PlayStation VR2 specifications and features
Sony has not revealed how much the PS VR2 headset weighs, but it is loaded with high-end specs. For starters, it offers a seamless 4K HDR experience with an OLED panel resolution of 2000 x 2040 per eye. Same as its predecessor, the FOV (field of view) will be limited to 110-degrees and features a 90 to 120Hz refresh rate.
Current-day virtual reality systems require cameras to be set up in either corner of the room for tracking, height adjustments, and establishing a playing field. The PS VR2 headset, however, is equipped with 4 integrated cameras that track your hand and controller movement. Any kind of head tilt or shift will also be detected and reflected onto your character in-game.
In addition to spatial 3D Audio, Sony has implemented foveated rendering that changes pixel density depending on your focus point. The eye-trackers within the headset only focus on the fovea of one’s eye and maximise the resolution. Everything outside will appear a bit blurry and pixelated.
The PS VR2 also includes a sensory feature that “amplifies the sensations of in-game actions from the player.” The headset’s innard is fitted with a motor that vibrates to add an intelligent tactile element, emulating sensations from within the game. Sony claims that once your in-game character stops sprinting or is stuck in a tense situation, the headset motor will start whirring and throbbing to emulate an elevated pulse. Similarly, any kind of thrusts or objects zipping past your head will also be felt.
The new PlayStation VR2 Sense controllers see a massive design change in comparison to the older ones that resembled a pair of light-up microphones. The Sense controllers follow a similar design as the more typical VR controllers like the Oculus Quest 2. They feature a joystick-like handle with surrounding plastic orbs, and come with haptic feedback that emulates the sense of physical touch and feel via vibrations, depending on where you are walking in-game.
You also get enhanced controls, adaptive triggers, vibrations, and finger touch detection, which lets a game know where your fingers are resting without having to press any buttons. Sony has also reduced the number of cables required for seamless play – only one cable plugs into your PlayStation 5 console.