Oculus Rift may be the biggest name in virtual reality right now, but sources suggest that Sony is poised to steal the upstart’s thunder at GDC next week. EDGE magazine reports that select third-party developers already have access to the PlayStation 4’s currently unannounced headset – and it’s significantly superior to the first incarnation of the abovementioned outfit’s interactive goggles.

While the publication cautions that this current superiority could even itself out with the arrival of the competitor’s more advanced Crystal Cove development kit, it’s impressive to see the Japanese giant taking the lead in a space that few knew it was even dabbling in until recently – even if that advantage is only temporary. However, the big problem for the platform holder is that it purportedly hasn’t got much software ready yet.

The headset is set to be announced during a panel hosted by Worldwide Studios president Shuhei Yoshida and EyeToy creator Dr. Richard Marks on 18th March, but insiders don’t expect to see too much from the firm, aside from perhaps a technology demo from one of its first-party outfits. We’d put good money on either DriveClub or something new from Media Molecule putting in an appearance, but we’ll have to wait and see.

Furthermore, while developers supposedly now have access to the device, the platform holder’s not putting any pressure on the selected studios to use it. In fact, according to the magazine’s sources, some have even questioned the viability of the peripheral, despite its undeniably exciting potential. Once again, it seems that the manufacturer will have to drive adoption of the unit before cautious third-party publishers invest any resources into it.

Still, after months of speculation, it’s exciting to know that we’re only weeks away from strapping ourselves into the PS4’s added dimension. Assuming that the PlayStation maker can get the pricing and software lineup right, this could culminate in a seismic shift for the industry as a whole. Are you intrigued by the idea of virtual reality, or do you predict that this is going to be another unnecessary flop? Look around in the comments section below.

[via edge-online.com]