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Futuristic PS5 feature might read your vital signs and integrate them into gameplay

Published Feb 25th, 2020 2:47PM EST
PS5 Release Date
Image: Olly Curtis/Future Publishing/Shutterstock

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Sony is yet to unveil the PS5 in all its glory, but we do know the new PlayStation 5 will sport the same hardware as the Xbox Series X. When it comes to core specs, the same 7nm AMD chips will power both consoles, and each of them will come with SSD storage on board. But that’s where the magic starts, as Sony and Microsoft will both try to lure in buyers with a few exclusive features. Microsoft already unveiled some of them earlier this week, when it released most of the Series X’s specs. Sony hasn’t made any PlayStation 5 announcements since early January when it revealed the PS5 logo at CES 2020, but we have seen plenty of gaming-related patents emerge lately, which gave us an idea of what Sony’s next-gen gaming experience might look like.

While there’s no way to prove these inventions will be available as soon as the PS5 launches, the patents certainly show that Sony is thinking outside the box for the PlayStation 5. Just the other day we talked about two such patents that described controller innovations that would make the PS5 stand out when compared to the Xbox. Now, a new discovery reveals that one of Sony’s proposed ideas would add a crazy futuristic layer to the PlayStation 5 gaming experience.

Sony hasn’t even acknowledged the commercial name of the next DualShock controller — anything but DualShock 5 is just silly — but the Japanese giant did reveal some of its features. The controller will have better haptics than ever for an even more immersive gaming experience. Patents that followed suggested the controller will feature a microphone for voice commands, as well as new rear-facing buttons. Sony just released an accessory that brings rear-facing buttons to the DualShock 4 controller, confirming its interest in adding rear-facing controls for some games.

A new patent application that was just uncovered describes tech that would allow the PS5 to interpret biometric data read by the controller, including heart rate and sweat, and even combine that information with information from a camera. The goal of such technology is for the console to trigger in-game actions automatically based on specific parameters, and it could work well with horror games or any other kind of content that might make your pulse race.

The patent surfaced online earlier this week and since its initial discovery, IGN spotted a previously unreported detail explaining that a separate accessory could actually be responsible for collecting biofeedback information.

“There is a need to provide a low-cost peripheral” that can “provide increased functionality for a range of different applications,” a part of the patent says. This suggests that the DualShock 5 would require a standalone accessory to read biometrics rather than shipping with built-in sensors. If that’s the case, the accessory could also work with the current DualShock 4 or third-party controllers. Again, Sony is patenting plenty of PlayStation ideas right now, but there’s no guarantee that any of them will be used with the PS5 this year or even at all.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.

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