Judging by the popularity of the Dualshock controller, it’s unlike that Sony will make drastic changes to the controller design of the inevitable PS4. However, rumor has it that there will be a few alterations present, the most notable of which is a touch-pad and a button that supports an intriguing new ‘share’ feature.
The information comes from Edge Online, who recently wrote that insider sources have told them a bit about the possible innovations that will be incorporated into the PS4’s controller:
“Sources close to the hardware have revealed to us that PS4 will ship with a redesigned controller which is the same size as an existing DualShock but features a small touchpad in place of the existing Select, Start and PS buttons. The tech is based on Vita’s rear touchpad, and is similarly responsive in use.
A new Share button on the controller will, when pressed, launch a new feature that will allow screenshots and video to be distributed online. The PS4 hardware will continually record the most recent 15 minutes of onscreen action (with no processing penalty, claims our source), which users will then be able to edit and broadcast via the Internet.”
While this is a rumor for now given the sketchiness of the whole ‘insider source’ nature, it certainly makes sense that Sony would be aiming to do something new with the PS4 controller in an attempt to innovate, all the while keeping the general practicality of the Dualshock design.
The big question regarding the possible touch-pad/touch-screen is whether or not it will factor into actual gameplay. It would seem rather gimmicky and pointless to just have it replace the start and select buttons, so we’re betting there’s more to this feature. Given Nintendo’s success with the DS dual-screen and Wii U gamepad, it doesn’t seem far-fetched. Or perhaps there will be some functionality similar to the VMU from the Sega Dreamcast? Let the speculation begin.
The sharing feature seems a bit more straightforward. As far as we understand, it would operate similarly to theater modes from games like Halo 3 and the Call of Duty series, wherein recent gameplay footage is captured and stored either on your HDD or a cloud, and editing software allows players to compose videos from the footage. Presumably, players will then be able to easily and efficiently upload their videos to Youtube or other social media platforms. We have to admit, that sounds pretty cool.
Whatever the case, we’ll find out all the details very soon. All hints point to a PS4 reveal by Sony on Feb. 20, so mark your calendars and begin your predictions.