Sony has recently patented a new controller design, hinting at some form of revamped motion device for the PlayStation 4. Similar in form to the PlayStation Move controller on the PlayStation 3, this fresh peripheral includes all of the same core functionality as its current generation counterpart. However, there is one area that it differs from its predecessor: it has a touchpad on the front.
The platform holder detailed the addition in the documentation: “In a traditional joystick, it’s hard to keep a user's thumb still while the user provides input by engaging various motions with the joystick. This is due to the fact that in the joystick, the thumb's support moves. However, using a touch input surface, the thumb can be kept still while continuing to provide the user's input by pressing on the input surface. The pressing of the user's finger on the input surface causes friction that is recognized.”
Interestingly, the touchpad could be employed as more than just a substitute for a traditional analogue stick. The patent outlines how the tactile input may be used in a similar way to the touchpad on the PS4’s controller, all while allowing the user to be much more mobile than with a traditional two-handed device.
Furthermore, the company is considering surrounding the touchpad with an LED light in order to provide additional feedback. “Portions of the boundary [around the touch sensor] may light up to identify the direction and/or location of the touch input,” the firm detailed. This represents a step up from the DualShock 4, which does not provide any additional feedback on where the panel is being touched.
Of course, whether this will ever actually reach the market remains to be seen, but Sony is clearly considering new ways to innovate in the controller space. What improvements would you like to see made to the traditional PlayStation Move controller? Do you even want the peripheral to make a comeback? Wave a wand in the comments section below.