For our money, the DualShock 4 is comfortably the best default controller on the market – and we're not the only ones who think so. However, the PlayStation 4's primary input device has been let down by generally poor build quality and bad battery life. Sony, however, may be about to update the device – if a patent for an upgraded controller is to be believed.
The plans were submitted on 6th January, and reveal a DualShock 4 similar in size and shape to the current device, but with a few adjustments. For starters, there are now paddles on the handles of the device, similar to those you'd find on a SCUF controller, or the Xbox Elite. Also, the diagrams show how you could potentially customise the button layout, making it – shudder – asymmetrical if you prefer.
It's worth noting that companies file patents for products that don't get released all of the time, so this could be yet another case of that. However, there are plenty of people who would pay good money for an upgraded PS4 controller, so Sony may be leaving cash on the table if it doesn't introduce one. Could this ship with the PS4K, for example? We'll see.
Update (19:00PM BST): Further investigation from the NeoGAF crowd suggests that this patent has been bubbling around for a few years. Why was this refiled, then? Maybe it wasn't and Google Translate's acting up again. Either way, it does beg an interesting question: should Sony be looking to upgrade the DualShock 4 at this point?
[source ipforce.jp, via neogaf.com]
All they have to do is improve the material of the joysticks and make the D-pad more like Nintendo's or the Vita.......that is all.
@sub12 Yup, agreed. A few more hours battery life would be nice, too.
I wonder if such a controller was built with maybe better VR controls in mind as well?
I just bought a new PS4 controller. They don’t seem to last as long as the PS3 ones.
You would need another Move iteration for that, this looks to be going after the Xbox Elite type of market, given the paddles and all.
Added an update to the article. It doesn't seem like this patent is as new as assumed after all. There's still a discussion to be had here, though: should the controller be updated?
Still better than the DS3.....that thing felt outdated from day one, along with the sixaxis. I never felt like the dual shock was all that great of a controller until the DS4 to be honest........although the original dual analog, in retrospection, was the most practical on the market until the Xbox S controller in 2002.
@sub12 Agreed, the PS4 controllers are nicer to play with, more ergonomic. Big improvement there. But the PS3 ones were less liable to break and had far far better battery life.
Personally, I like the idea of the L4/R4 buttons on the handles, but they'd need to be either much larger than necessary or somehow slidable up and down the handle itself, because it won't be comfortable to everyone otherwise.
I saw a discussion about tilt controls... somewhere, can't remember where... on the internet and I'd like the 9-axis gyroscope if it doesn't have it already. (I do remember they were talking about the PS3 [6-axis] and Wii U [9-axis gamepad] main controllers, didn't really mention the PS4. Apparently the 360 controller not having any sort of gyroscope is why most games never used it on the PS3, it was considered rude or something for the PS3 to use anything the 360 couldn't for multiplatform games)
The d-pad is by far my favorite variation on d-pads across all 3 main consoles. I dunno but it just makes the most sense to have each direction its own separate button.
The Dual Shock 4 is fine, it is my favorite controller of all time actually, better than the GameCube controller.
@get2sammyb customisable button layout and new "skins" would be cool... Never had a problem with my ds4 really, the rt sticks occasionally but only whilst playing battlefield 4 (which is weird right?) but apart from that no issues...
I've never been a fan of the Dual Shocks, as they have never been too conformable to me. The DS4 is a step up in ergonomics, but a step back in quality and battery life. Honestly, I'd just be happy with a DS4 that will last me through a lengthy gaming session without swapping controllers or stopping to charge.
The grips on the dual sticks are starting to tear off. Also the battery life is bad. But the DS4 is very comfortable to play. I will never buy an updated controller though, except if the current one breaks.
Well that's it, Im done with console gaming! When I buy a console controller I expect it to last 5+ years, now my current controller is useless because they might be bringing out a new one. What's the point in having a console controller if I have go upgrade it every 3 years /s
Looks pretty cool although I'm happy with my current one.
@Sir_JBizzle know what you mean, but I never got why people "stop to charge". Any USB power outlet can charge while you play. I got two chargers plugged in near my sofa so people can charge their phones when visiting me, but they are used by my DS4 a lot more.
@sub12 Oh I know that, I just wondered whether you can able to customise it for specific VR games etc.
My RT keeps getting stuck, has anyone else had that? Proper annoying.
@ComicBookGuy I have a charger next to my sofa as well, but where I sit to play games in relation to where the charger is makes charging while playing a bit more difficult. Also since it plugs in at the top of the controller there's a little bend at the end of the USB cord and I've already messed up a couple already.
I do however plug it into the front of the Playstation 4 when the dogs aren't around, otherwise they'll just yank it out crossing through. I'll probably just end up trying to find a cord the length the ones that come with the XB1's play and charge kit. Those are the perfect length, but sadly aren't compatible with DS4s lol
In my opinion, the DS4 is the most comfortable Playstation to use. My main criticism though is the build quality. Compare to the XB1 standard controller, the difference is noticeable. Regardless about preference to layout or whether or not you should have a battery compartment (I prefer this incidentally even though I use a rechargeable pack, I prefer the choice!), the actual build quality isn't what I expect from Sony. The shell on my DS4's do not fit together flush. I have a different size gap on one side to the other, I can feel an edge where one is slightly out from the other too. More obvious as I have the gold controller. The rubber on the thumbsticks was notorious for wearing out quickly and the triggers get stuck too. The thumbsticks can get 'stuck' down so won't click anymore too. Obviously the battery life isn't great either but that's not own to build quality but the decision to use such a small battery.
Again, in my opinion, the best controller on the market is the Xbox Elite. The build quality is fantastic and feels solid in the hands. The decision to use metal parts may increase its weight but it has also increased its durability too. The way the shell fits together is much better too - not a single gap or part not fitting together perfectly. The brushed metal against the velvet plastic shell looks classy and 8months on, it still feels and looks as good as new. No play in the thumbsticks, no sign of wear or tear etc. In the same time, I had worn out my first DS4 and my 2nd is feeling a bit 'looser' now too with a slight bit of play in the thumbsticks - particularly the left.
If Sony were to make an Elite style DS4 - even without the option to swap the layout to an assymetric (my preferred layout - My left thumb sits perfectly on the D-pad and I have to stretch my thumb across to the thumbstcks - its no so bad with the right as I am always taking my thumb off to press the buttons. As far as I am concerned, the thumbs natural position should sit on the thumbstick if that is what gets used the most), with the same build quality and price, I would certainly buy it. I have no doubt it would work out more cost effective as I go through a controller in around 8-10 months so if it lasts a few years, it will work out cheaper in the long run.
I replaced all my DS4 thumbsticks with One sticks and if we could place them differently, I'd be a happy man. And I'm not just talking asymmetrical, but why not place both sticks on top while playing a shooter, just like the Wii U pro controller has?
I find myself playing on my Xbox One more and more, a console that is inferior in every way and made by MS where I emotionally don't have any connection with, just because of their Elite controller. Take Overwatch for instance: I like playing as Mercy, but switching weapons is a b*tch because I have to take my left thumb of the stick. With the Elite Controller however, I just map it to one of the paddles and I'm playing like a pro!
Sony needs to step up its game. I'm playing on a Madcatz MLG pro controller on my PS3 for years now because it's customizable and I buy multiplats, especially shooters, on my One, but if Sony just offers us more choice I could even do without my One.
Know the feeling. I buy games on X1 sometimes because they come with the BC 360 predecessors for free. I'd rather all my games be on PS4 but, a slightly better framerate/resolution can't trump free games imo.
That's a tough one though cause they didn't plan for BC, a and really have no way to compete on that level at this point.
I actually sold my Dark Souls 3 on the PS4 because I found out I could get a free copy of the original with the One version. The underdog always has to come up with stuff like that, just like Sony treating us gamers like kings after the big hack in the PS3 days.
I just want better battery, just 2x battery capacity for a total of 16 hours of gaming is fine.
I'd love Sony to release an 'elite' controller for sure!
Given I cant even put the DS4 down without R2 and L2 activating (Thanks for having it face downwards, people DO put their controllers down), the absolutely abysmal battery life (I think the Wii U Gamepad goes a little bit longer, not by much, and it's older AND has a damn screen), and the breakage horror stories, I can see them doing an update. It's comfortable to hold at least.
Oh, and whats the point of the LED thingy? All it does is glow the colours of the chaos emeralds as it charges...
Im totally down for in. Elite DS4, its been in my head for a little Bit. I personally wouldn't mind slightly bigger dimensions, stightly more spaced sticks, more resistance to the triggers, and most importantly 2Xs the battery life!
But other than that DS4 is my favorite controller of all time! ! !
Sony should be looking to apologise for the pathetic battery life of a dual shock 4, but they should not expect to profit from poor design decisions through hardware 'upgrades'. And the battery life is the only thing I need.
What I do not need is a light to drain that battery every second the controller is on.
My controllers left stick is starting to feel a little loose and the the x button is starting to stick I'd buy a controller of the same design that was a harder wearing for sure as I'm close to buying a new controller anyway.
@Draythedestroyer having had both launch day controllers die, I'd say if you had an early version - the newer consoles came with much better DS4's. My white one and the one I got with my replacement PS4 feel very different (build quality wise).
@BLPs Dualshock4 battery life is 8 plus hours, I know because I have finished cod black ops 3 alternate story in two sitting at 5 hours + 3.5 hours. Wii u gamepad battery life is 3 plus hours, I know because I'm forced to use it for playing splatoon. Just set the ds4 light to "dim".
I agree about the R2 button thought, its annoying to put the DS4 down and R2 button usually activating.
Btw I'm using ds4 20th anniversary edition and not the launch ds4, I don't know if ds4 20th anniversary has better battery or not.
Ok I agree the DS4 is a poor build quality I am due to either purchase a 4th controller in 3 years or buy a whole new touch pad matrix; I understand that people want the customisable pad etc but I would much prefer they used the materials they used for the DS3 shell on the DS4 and also sourced a new manufactorer for the analogue sticks and the touchpads they are my main sources of failure the battery issue is dead easy to fix as the DS3 battery fits in the DS4 so you only need to ebay purchase a couple DS3 batterys that are brand new and put them in your pad (this takes no time at all)
@mrobinson91 u do know that just because an upgrade comes out, u DON'T have to buy it!! U do know that yes?
@JoeBlogs I bought wii u pro controller one day after trying the gamepad, annoyingly splatoon can only be played with gamepad. I sold the wii u after finishing most of it exclusive thought, ps4 is enough for me.
Don't need paddles, I had the elite and they got in the way and confused my old brain. But I don't think Sony could produce a controller as good as the elite. I really hope so though.
@Lloydeeee I was just joking
@Cron_13 i picked mine up a year after launch and to be fair the controller doesn't feel cheap. Its just starting to feel used. I'm a daily user so it may just be wear and tear.
Nice. I'm dying for some paddles! I went to custom order a modded controller with paddles, but it was crazy expensive for what it was... Ever since the Xbox Elite controller, I've been waiting for Sony to follow suit
Very excited about this!
@ComicBookGuy I have a cable plugged into the television USB. Being as that's the only place I use the pad makes battery life a big, non problem. I also put toppers on the sticks day one so that's another first world problem taken outside and shot.
Probably just bring the patent up to date so that they can make sure to collect the appropriate royalties from MS.
The only real change I'd like for the DS4 is for Sony to put the 2 part design into production. The Wiimote/Nunchuk setup is so comfortable! (aside from the wire)
@get2sammyb dude, have you seen the battery life for the wii u pro controller? Nearly 80 hours of gameplay on a single charge!!!
Just give us a way to design our own controllers like Xbox are doing now.
@BAMozzy i went through 3 xbox elite controllers in 5 months. The analog sticks came loose due to crappy parts. You must have got a good one. There customer support sucks to.
This is for when PS4 NX Hybrid Console is announced around September. Ninty players are used to having the sticks up top with dpad and buttons below like the Wii U tablet and Pro controller. This way both PS players and Ninty players get what they are used to, and possibly an option if they so choose.
@JoeBlogs The wii u is too expensive for what it is, just sold it and buy nx when it come out, zelda should be better on nx. Splatoon is fun in single or multiplayer, I really recommended it if you have wii u. Also bayonetta 2, definitly try bayonetta 2.
@ZAKALAK You must be very unlucky as my XB1 controllers lasted a lot longer than my DS4's - Maybe you mistreated them? MS's customer support is very good too and I have never had any issues (so far). Often very easy to speak to someone via phone, twitter or even chat options. So either you are trolling because this is a PS website and looking to gain 'kudos' from other PS owners at MS's expense or just been very unlucky but those of us with Xboxes, and there are a lot, have not had anywhere near the same experience you are alleging...
I'd happily buy an Elite DS4. On to my third controller now: thumbstick rubber came off both, RT started sticking on the first one along with a tendency to send left signals from the stick when it wasn't in use, and the shell on the second started pulling apart. And yeh, battery could do with a couple more hours in it.
@BAMozzy um why would i make stuff up? All you have to do is look up loose analog stick on google many people are having a problem. It was built with cheap parts. Im not arguing if the ds 4 is better or not. I dont give a crap. Xbox service sucked for me. They sent me two controllers that eventually were broke in a month. One of the controllers took 3 weeks to get after they received it when they told me 7 to 10 business days. I would not call that good service. I sold my xbox after this ordeal and just got a ps4 4 days ago.
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