Oculus VR might be making news everywhere with its VR headset and its acquisition by Facebook. However, Sony had started working on virtual reality even before Oculus existed. With Sony’s Project Morpheus, users will get a more immersive experience as compared to other VR headsets. The problem with most of the VR headsets is that you won’t be able to interact with the virtual environment with your real-life hands. They lack a true “presence.”
Latest Version of Morpheus VR Headset
Sony Computer Entertainment, the company’s video game division, displayed its latest version of Morpheus VR headset at the Game Developer’s Conference which was held in San Francisco. The headset works with PlayStation Move controllers which will let wearers to use their hands. Sony has been experimenting from a long time now. In the mid-2000s, it tested the head-tracking technology using the PS3 console and PlayStation Eye. Due to the extensive research and development in this area, Sony has made a commitment to a release date in 2016 for its consumer VR headset.
Gaining adoption among the existing customers is the key to the company’s bid in VR. They are targeting people who already have the PlayStation gaming consoles. The tech giant wants to combine their gaming consoles and virtual reality technology to provide the customers with an immersive experience.
Shuhei Yoshida, president of Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide Studios said “We don’t believe that VR is necessarily going to replace the conventional games that people have been playing and developers have been making for over 25 years. VR will give developers another way to entertain people. You’ll see even more variety of gaming experience by having the VR option.”
Sony has demonstrated different games at GDC, which prompted users to sit down, stand up and lean to play the games. Sony has even worked with automakers and NASA to explore different VR gaming experiences.
Sony is also expecting that a plug-and-play approach will cause an increase in the adoption of the Morpheus headset among PS console owners. The senior director of research and development at the Sony Computer Entertainment, Richard Marks, said that “When you buy a Morpheus kit and connect it to your PS4, it just works without needing to set up any drivers or download anything. We want people to have a very easy gameplay experience. Since everybody’s PS4 is exactly the same, it’s easier for developers to make sure that the games and experiences they create are great for all consumers.”
Still a Lot to Do
Though we can expect that Sony will be ahead in the virtual reality headset race by bringing in its Project Morpheus to the consumers across the globe, it has still a lot to do. The company is still working on bringing in changes in its VR headset to make it better. The latest version of the headset has a 5.7 inch OLED display and it is partnering with different game developers to find out new gaming experiences for the users.
Yoshida said “VR is such a new medium that developers have to learn how to design around the new paradigm to create great experiences. That requires a lot of learning and communication with developers.”
Consumers are an important factor, when it comes to making virtual reality popular. They have to try the headset to understand what it can offer. The challenge is to make them try this headset. Yoshida said “Getting millions of people to understand how amazing VR experiences are is a big challenge. We start with events like GDC where we let people try it, get excited about it, and tell their friends.”
Oculus Rift is yet to release its consumer version. Samsung Gear VR has been unable to provide complete true immersive experience to the users. Now with Sony releasing its consumer version of Project Morpheus in 2016, we can expect that it will be ahead of others in the race of VR headsets.
What do you think?
Do you think Sony’s Project Morpheus will be better than the other VR headsets? Have you tried out the Oculus Rift or Samsung Gear VR? Share your insights in the comments below.
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