New Sony patent suggests a wireless PSVR headset could be on the way

playstation vr 2017 review front angle
Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

Sony patent documents published by the Japan Patent Office over the weekend suggest that a wireless PSVR is in the works. According to the images, the virtual reality headset will be able to function without any direct connection to a console or breakout box, and will instead use a radio wave to communicate between the console, the breakout box, and the headset itself.

The PlayStation VR can be a bit unwieldy for some gaming setups because of its mess of wires and adapters, but it appears Sony could be putting an end to the clutter with a wireless version. Drawings for the patent application — originally submitted more than two years ago — show a larger camera than the PlayStation 4 typically uses, but the setup otherwise looks very similar to what the PlayStation VR uses today.

The breakout box is connected to both the television and the console, and the controller included in the drawing appears to be a DualShock 4. The console itself even looks like a PlayStation 4, though the limited processing power of the console compared to VR-ready PCs raises questions about whether the wireless headset could actually be for the next PlayStation system.

The wireless PlayStation VR, should it be released, will still make use of some console, and it doesn’t appear that Sony is moving into the portable virtual reality headsets that competitors like HTC Vive and Oculus have been building.

If you have a small child or pets who can be hampered by wires, then you know that a wireless VR headset for PlayStation would literally be a game-changer. It’s unclear just how Sony would plan on keeping the games’ graphical fidelity, however, as the PlayStation VR was already the least powerful of the three major platforms. Should it be communicating with more powerful hardware, that would likely be less of an issue, and the added convenience could help to push VR further into the mainstream.

Sony is remaining tight-lipped on its plan for future PlayStation consoles, but the writing is on the wall. The company won’t be attending E3 this year, and its lineup of upcoming PlayStation 4 exclusives is starting to look thin. We expect to hear more information on its future plans for the PlayStation brand as we approach 2020.

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