Sony is usually pretty keen on using the latest technologies for their video game consoles, as you can see in the PlayStation 5. This latest patent they filed only proves this. I mean, seriously. How much more high tech can you get than a PS controller that can change temperatures? And not because it’s on fire or you put it in the fridge or anything like that.

Sony Tech: A New PlayStation Controller Heater/Cooler?

Image showcasing the implementation of the deformable elastic members in controllers.
Now we can feel if the player character is on fire or in a blizzard…someday.

Exputer has just come out with a very interesting story about Sony and a new patent they just filed. According to them, this patent is for a “new deformable elastic sensor or gel-like material to replace the plastic used in PlayStation controllers“. Apparently, the whole point of this elastic sensor/gel-like material is to improve haptic feedback for the controller. Both in terms of improving vibrations and to potentially emulate “temperature in the controllers to reflect gameplay using the new material“. The patent gives the example of the player character picking up a hot object in-game causing the controller to feel mildly hot in response.

How does Sony plan to make this temperature changer? Well, according to the patent, the controller would use a “Peltier element” to produce those temperature changes. The basic concept of such an element is that it’s a solid state heat pump that transfers heat from one part of the element to another using electricity. A Peltier element can thus heat up or cool down at will. As you can imagine, this would greatly increase the level of immersion for any PlayStation controller using this technology. Sony still has to work out the kinks of this technology, but this could be the basis of a new DualSense controller for the PS5 or even a future PS6.

More Sony Tech: Even Squishier Controllers?

An example diagram revealing an arrangement of the elastic member in the controller.
Sony even wants the buttons and joysticks to be squishier.

Of course, all that thermoelectric heating/cooling is dependent on that new elastic sensor Sony is developing. According to Exputer: this elastic sensor will use various flexible materials “such as a macromolecular gel material, examples of which are silicone-based macromolecular gel materials and urethane-based gel materials, and various elastomer materials“. It might even use sci-fi levels of tech such as artificial muscles or soft actuators to “ensure a smooth and organic experience during gameplay sessions“. Sony even wants the controller to have a built-in AI to tell how hard you’re pressing down on this elastic sensor and in what way.

An example diagram revealing the external view of an arrangement of the elastic member in the controller.
It’s like looking at the squishy toe beans on a dog. But in controller form.

All this is just to have a better PlayStation controller. It’s really quite amazing what lengths Sony is going to to try to improve gameplay experience. Of course, with all this new tech, there’s absolutely zero timeline for when we’ll see this. Whether in a future PlayStation controller or some other console’s controller. I for one though, will be quite excited when this tech does release to the general public. Maybe you will too? Tune back in to THS much, much later to find out more about this new tech when we do.

Source: Exputer