Of all the major VR headsets on the market today, Sony’s PSVR lags behind the update. But what can we see in the next generation PSVR? Dominic Mallinson, senior vice president of research and development at Sony, has a few ideas and they are quite exciting.
Malison talked about what to expect from the next generation of VR headsets. To be clear, he did not specifically confirm that the functions in question appear in an undeclared PSVR 2. However, this is probably a good indicator of what you see in the headset, which we have not yet seen.
2 times higher resolution and HDR
For starters, Mallinson said he expects the resolution in the “next generation of VR products” to double the number of pixels. Current VR headsets use high-definition displays that allow us to look into virtual worlds. But devices with a large number of pixels can reduce the terrible “ScreenDoor effect,” a term that describes the visibility of lines between pixels that distort an image. PSVR currently uses a 1080p display, but Oculus, HTC and Valve have already begun to improve the resolution in their new headsets.
But that’s not all. Mallinson expects to see displays with a high dynamic range, the existence of which in virtual reality equipment will be possible in the near future.
“HDR brings a wider range of colors to our screens. The human eye sees a huge range of light: from bright sunny to deep shade. Today, VR covers only a small part. Therefore, in order to increase the sense of presence, I expect HDR to be used in the near future, ”says Mallinson.
120 degree viewing angle
The field of view (FOV) determines how much virtual world you can see. The current version of PSVR has a viewing angle of 100 degrees. Mallinson expects that in the next generation of VR, this figure will jump to about 120 degrees. He said that the region has “diminishing returns,” probably referring to problems that come with a wider FOV. For example, potentially the user may feel more uncomfortable when moving to VR.
It is very important. Mallinson noted that user comfort is “incredibly important” to attract more people to VR. He sees the cable that connects the headset to the console / PC as a big obstacle.
“So this is what we have to decide in order to get mass distribution,” he said.
But what does it mean? Will the new PSVR all-in-one headset, like the Oculus Quest, or will it work in a wireless network with a console? Mallinson suggested the latter, but, importantly, also said that this may be an option for consumers, rather than a necessity.
“This is one of the easiest ways. Here is a wired headset. You can take the wire and replace it with a wireless data transfer method. And then you will have a range. So you can have an introductory model and a high-end model. This is what we did with the PlayStation 4. “
Finally, we have one of the most sought-after innovations in VR — look tracking. It includes a detection sensor, where your eyes watch what is happening on the virtual display. Mallinson reports that this can be used as a new input form. More importantly, eye tracking can be used for foveated rendering on the next generation PSVR. This significantly reduces the computational load on the console. So we will get even more, say, from the upcoming Sony PlayStation 5, than the basic increase in power.
Although it’s interesting to hear all this from a PlayStation representative, we still do not know which of these improvements will be implemented in PSVR 2. Mallinson also did not touch on other important areas, such as controllers, on which Sony seems to be working.
At the moment we know that the PS5 will support the original PSVR at launch, which will take place after 2019. Sony has not yet announced the next generation PSVR, but at the moment it seems that we still need to expect the announcement of new items.
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