The PS5, like every PlayStation console before it, will come with a new generation of controller. We’ve heard a few things about upcoming features for the Dualshock 5, but this latest rumor is about the feature that literally gives the controller its name.
SegmentNext (via BGR) spotted a new Sony patent that tells us more about a potential major upgrade to the controller’s haptic feedback and vibration feature. It was filed with the USPTO in April 2017, and was then published in February 2020.
Rather than the rumble motor that we’ve seen on Sony controllers since the original DualShock, the patent details the use of “voice coil actuators” in its place. Originally designed for us in traditional telephone speakers, these actuators are now used for many other purposes.
Depending on how much electric current is sent through the actuator, the magnet and coil assembly can move at different speeds and distances along the actuator’s shaft, giving two adjustable settings. The current DualShock controllers can only modify how fast the two internal rumble motors spin.
All this translates to additional control over the vibration the controller produces, and hopefully more meaningful and intuitive haptic feedback that will increase game immersion or act as a helpful indicator for players.
The PS5 controllers could break ground in other ways too. Another recent Sony patent detailed how a controller could monitor your heart rate and sweat to adjust the game or make decisions based on how a player reacted to certain situations.
But the thing with patents is that they don’t always become products. And of course there’s a chance that any technology like this that Sony’s been working on may not be ready in time for the PS5’s launch this year. We may have to wait for the PS6 or even longer before we get this awesome new haptic tech in our hands.