There has been much speculation about the future of PlayStation, including whether the PlayStation 5 will be an actual console or not. However, according to a patent application filed last year but published recently, it looks like PlayStation have tentative plans to create a touchscreen-enabled PlayStation controller.
PlayStation’s controllers have remained relatively unchanged for the past 20 years or so, this new patent suggests that they could be replacing the DualShock 4’s touch-sensitive control pad with a fully-fledged touchscreen.
The DualShock 4 touchpad enables gamers to navigate through menus and access game stats, but it hasn’t been fully embraced its capabilities.
A touchscreen on the controller could provide more opportunities for interactive feedback, such as displaying in-game stats, a mini-map, or current inventory, or even sharing video broadcast or showing incoming friend requests or invites.
This isn’t a new idea, we have seen iterations of touchscreen technology in gaming controllers before in the failed Nintendo Wii U (since corrected with the Switch) and Sega Dreamcast. Perhaps PlayStation will learn from their mistakes and provide a controller with touchscreen capabilities that gamers actually like and use.
As this is just a patent, there is no confirmation that this will be happening. However, as Sony is already in the development stages of the next-gen PlayStation, it is possible that the controllers for that console will have touchscreens.
The next generation of PlayStation consoles is projected to arrive as early as 2019 and as late as 2021.