Sony has not commented on its plans for a PSVR2 device since saying it was “years away” last year. However, it recently held a “closed-door” summit for developers in which it confirmed some rumors about the device’s specifications. It is also pushing for optional VR support for AAA games.
Sony has reportedly revealed a few concrete specs for a new VR headset. According to YouTube channel PSVR Without Parole, the new device codenamed “NGVR” (next-gen VR) will offer “dramatic leaps” in performance (video recap below). The news comes from a “closed-door” PSVR summit that Sony held for potential developers.
When rumors first started circulating back in 2019, Sony’s next VR headset was predicted to be wireless. That does not appear to be the case. However, the NGVR will connect directly to the PS5 with a single wire, which is much better than the current headset that connects to a dual-connector hub. The box, in turn, plugs into the TV via HDMI out, the PS4 or PS5 via HDMI in, and USB. So hooking up will be much more simplified.
Earlier this year, it was reported that the device would feature a 4K display (2000×2040 per eye), haptic feedback, and foveated rendering. These rumors are panning out true. Foveated rendering uses eye-tracking to focus higher resolutions where the user is looking while rendering the periphery at lower resolutions. The display will also have a 110-degree field of view, which is 10-degrees wider than the current model.
The NGVR will also have newly designed controllers that will replace the wand-like Move Controllers. They will feature adaptive triggers similar to those found on the DualSense. The controllers will also have capacitive touch sensors for the thumb, index, and middle fingers. The sensors can detect how far away your fingers are, which Sony describes as an “analog” control mechanism.
Perhaps the most important thing Sony had to say about the new VR system is that it wants to move away from the solely VR experiences and make “hybrid” triple-A games that users can play with or without the headset. We’ve seen a little of this already with games like No Man’s Sky and Resident Evil 7. However, to conserve disk space, players will have the option to download the standard or VR version of games. In current hybrid titles, the VR code is included in the standard game.
There is still no launch date for the PSRV2. Last October, Sony said a next-gen VR headset was still “years away.” At the time, Sony CEO Jim Ryan suggested we would not see a new headset until 2022 at the earliest. During the summit, Sony said that it would be announcing launch and pricing details in early 2022. Whether that means it is shooting for a holiday 2022 release of early 2023 remains to be seen.
Of course, all of this information is from an allegedly secret meeting and not from the horse’s mouth. So as always, until Sony gives its official word, treat it as a rumor.