PS4 Virtual Reality Headset To Be Unveiled At GDC 2014?

By Pete Haas 2014-02-22 11:35:53 discussion comments
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Sony could make major waves at GDC 2014 in San Francisco next month. A new report suggests that the company will reveal a new virtual reality headset for the PS4 at that convention.

The news comes courtesy of TechRadar, who says they spoke with a source that tried the headset at a private event.

"The quality and resolution are really, really good. People will definitely be impressed with what Sony's built," the source said.

The first report of a PS4 virtual reality headset came in September. CVG reported at the time that Sony showed off the hardware to developers at E3 and Gamescom. Evolution Studios is reportedly using the device for a cockpit view in their racing game Drive Club. Sony was said to be mulling over whether the headset should be marketed as a pivotal part of the console or an optional accessory. The company scrapped plans to announce the device at Gamescom and TGS and spend the extra time on polishing the device.

Last month, Sony Online Entertainment president John Smedley confirmed the existence of Sony's VR headset during a Reddit AMA.

"Hearing good things about 2 competitors, one of which actually comes from Sony," Smedley said when asked about rivals to the Oculus Rift. The Rift is a VR headset for PC/Mac/Linux games that was funded through a Kickstarter campaign.

The successful crowd-funding of the Rift, along with the growing list of supported games, demonstrates that there's high interest in virtual reality gaming. Though the Rift is the most high-profile VR device, the market's still young. Sony has the resources to make a huge splash.

Whether virtual reality gaming remains a niche or becomes mainstream will come down to price, though. If the PS4 headset costs as much as an Oculus Rift dev kit ($300), that might scare most gamers away. New PS4 owners already spent $400 on the console itself.

Still, sales and market share are questions for another day. In the meantime, I'm excited to see this new headset. It'll be interesting to see how Sony pitches this device to gamers who grew up using monitors and televisions for their entertainment. It's possible that Sony will give press some hands-on time with the VR headset during GDC as well, so we could find out a whole lot more about the hardware.

GDC 2014 will run from March 17th to March 21st. The convention will be held at the Moscone Center in San Francisco.
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