PS5 VR: Has Sony killed off PlayStation VR with big next-gen news?

PS5 VR: Has Sony killed off PlayStation VR with big next-gen news?
Hardware makers have to time announcements to make sure they don’t affect current products’ sales, which makes the new PS5 VR reveal interesting.

Sony has confirmed that the new PSVR system will not be available to buy during 2021, meaning there will be a sizable gap between its announcement and release date.

Millions of PSVR headsets have been sold since it first launched, but it seems likely that those sales are going to decline rapidly now that a replacement device is in the works.

This is the usual pattern after a new console is announced, and something similar happened with the sales of PS4 consoles after the PS5 was announced.

But if Sony was worried that they might have killed off their current VR buzz, they certainly aren’t showing it. This would suggest that the PS5 will be getting full-blown virtual reality support in late 2022, even if Sony is keeping its secrets for now.

This might also be a sign that the tech giant believes the current PlayStation VR model has reached its maximum audience, while wanting to avoid launching another piece of hardware during a year dedicated to the PS5.

While much of what is being planned for PS5 VR support remains unknown, What we do know is that the next-gen headset will be an upgrade over the PlayStation 4 version, offering improved resolution and field of view to tracking and input.

It has also been confirmed that the new headset will connect to the PS5 with a single cord to simplify setup and improve ease-of-use, while enabling a high-fidelity visual experience.

Speaking on the subject, Hideaki Nishino, Senior Vice President, Platform Planning & Management, told fans in February:

“One of the innovations we’re excited about is our new VR controller, which will incorporate some of the key features found in the DualSense wireless controller, along with a focus on great ergonomics.

“That’s just one of the examples of future-proof technology we’re developing to match our vision for a whole new generation of VR games and experiences.

“There’s still a lot of development underway for our new VR system, so it won’t be launching in 2021.

“But we wanted to provide this early update to our fans, as the development community has started to work on creating new worlds for you to explore in virtual reality.”

And Sony isn’t winding down the support for the PlayStation VR, with a number of new games announced for the virtual reality platform this week.

Speaking about the PSVR 2 announcement, PlayStation’s Jim Ryan told GQ: “We believe in VR and have been extremely happy with the results with the present PlayStation VR and think that we will do good business with our new VR system for PlayStation 5.

“More importantly, we see it as something beyond this coming iteration that really could be really big and really important. We like to innovate; we think our community likes us to innovate. I’d turn around the question and say, “Why not?” For us, it’s a very logical step to take. We’re very excited by it and we think that people who are going to make VR games for our new VR system are going to be very excited too.”

So even if Sony’s PS5 VR announcement does kill off sales, it seems the company are happy to keep things ticking until their next virtual reality project is ready.

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