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New Image Raises More Questions About What's In The PS4 Controller

Yesterday, we posted this photo of a prototype controller for the next PlayStation. The image turned up online, and an industry source familiar with the system told us the photo was indeed a prototype controller for the PS4, codenamed Orbis.

Today, a forum poster at Gametrailers has shared a better-quality photo of what looks like the same controller. (Higher-res image is here)

The person who posted the image, a Gametrailers user called SquishyMuffin, later offered this description of the controller:

The triggers are much more similar to the Xbox 360 ‘springy’ triggers. That’s a microphone (similar to VITA, Wii U) and that is also a headset port. Touch screen is resistive display, single touch, used for battery levels, friend lists, mini u.i blah blah. Taken a while ago, only had access to it via someone else.

That description is odd, because several details don’t line up with don’t line up with official, detailed Orbis documentation Kotaku has seen in the last few weeks.

Our documentation, which we’ve also confirmed as authentic, describes the touch-pad as being a two-point multi-touch pad with a mechanical click, when the Gametrailers poster says it’s single-touch. In addition to what we reported in January, our documentation indicates that the controller will have an RGB LED and something called a “light bar.” The documentation we’ve seen never mentions a screen and refers to “an electrical capacitance touchpad, where the position at which the user’s finger is touching the pad can be detected.”

On top of that, neither prototype photo has included the “share” button, which our documentation also says the Orbis controller will feature. While we believe that the 90-plus pages of documentation we’ve seen is real (Sony won’t confirm that, of course) it’s also possible that plans have changed.

So, while this photo looks more or less like the same prototype we saw yesterday, the forum-poster’s description raises some new questions. It’s worth remembering that both photographs are of prototypes, so the final design may well be different. We’ll doubtless find out more at Sony’s PlayStation event next Wednesday, February 20. In the meantime, here’s everything we’ve learned so far about the next PlayStation.