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Sony Patented a Wii U Style Controller Too

Posted by Sammy Barker

Great minds think alike

It turns out Nintendo isn’t the only company intent on merging handheld devices with home console experiences. A patent uncovered by Games Beat, shows Sony had a similar concept in mind way back in 2010.

The patent – awarded the incredibly lengthy "position-dependent gaming, 3-D controller, and handheld as a remote” moniker – refers to a touch screen device that would operate similarly to the Wii U. According to the accompanying information, the device would be able to track its own location as an “input to a video game” and render “an avatar on a mobile device such that it appears to overlay a competing user in the real world”.

The patent continues:

Using the mobile device’s position, view direction, and the other user’s mobile device position, an avatar (or vehicle, etc.) is depicted at an apparently inertially stabilized location of the other user’s mobile device or body. Some embodiments may estimate the other user’s head and body positions and angles and reflect them in the avatar’s gestures.

Seeing as the patent only refers to the hypothetical controller as a “handheld device” it’s difficult to know whether the gadget in question is simply a PlayStation Vita or perhaps a separate game controller designed for a future console.

Our guess is that, as with so many patents, this listing is just Sony covering its back. Only this time, it appears Nintendo pipped them to the post. Interesting stuff, nonetheless.

[via venturebeat.com]

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User Comments (7)

MachineLaw

#1

MachineLaw said:

I'm not really surprised about this. But, what I found intriguing is who had the idea first? Nintendo must have started development of Wii U at least since 2009, Sony presented this patent on 2010 but they must have begun research in 2009 as well. Corporate spies are a reality and I found it to be an extreme coincidence that both companies had the same idea around the same time.

In any case the truth is that Nintendo presented their controller first and Sony will wait and see if it is successful to release it's own version of it. Not that I will say that Sony copies everything Nintendo does(because it is not exactly true), but they hardly take any risks with their products, they always take the conservative side and any ideas they have they present them as separate accessories.

danschemen

#2

danschemen said:

i guess that's the one thing that still bothers me about sony is that they seem to try to copy what nintendo does and tries to do it better. it's not a bad thing but i think sony could do something else entire that could change the gaming industry.

FuzzyYellowBalls

#4

FuzzyYellowBalls said:

interesting. first they passed on the Kinect tech, then they had a similiar WiiU controller... what next, sony? what innovation are you turning your nose up on now?

WaLzgiStaff

#6

WaLzgi said:

@turtle: Not really since Nintendo will be the first one to capitalize on it. Sony will probably release a similar model later if the Wii U is very successful :P

turtlelink

#7

turtlelink said:

So basically they're doing what they did with the Move: See how it works with Nintendo before releasing their version... Well, that didn't work out so well last time.

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