Sony Working On Its Own Kinect

A patent filed in late 2011, but which has only been published this month, reveals that Sony is working on its own version of Kinect, Microsoft's popular motion-sensing peripheral for the Xbox 360 (and now PC).

Of course, the argument could be made that Kinect was Microsoft's own version of Sony's EyeToy (indeed, this new patent directly references 2003 trademarks Sony owns), a camera released almost a decade ago on the PlayStation 2, but it's too nice a day here to get bogged down in that quagmire.

The patent is for a "USER-DRIVEN THREE-DIMENSIONAL INTERACTIVE GAMING ENVIRONMENT", which would involve plugging a camera into a PlayStation and using it to read both a player's movements and their positioning in a 3D space.

It was filed by none other than Richard Marks, the main man behind Sony's PlayStation Move peripheral.

Now, as with any other patent, remember this doesn't mean Sony will be releasing a 3D camera for the PS3 (or a future console). It just means the company is thinking about it.

USER-DRIVEN THREE-DIMENSIONAL INTERACTIVE GAMING ENVIRONMENT [USPTO, via PSLS]


Comments

    So we're all moving away from the Move?

      I think the Move was a strategic release by Sony. They knew about Kinect but didn't think it was good enough by itself at the time to impress (gameplay wise) and so they chose to develop the Move so that when came the time for them to release their "kinect", the move will add another dimension to motion play on top of the camera tech. Plus it would already have an install base and hopefully be cheaper at retail.

        if by strategic you mean late to tbe party and utter failure then... yes. definitely.

          yeah the kinect made a much bigger splash, but the move is definitely the most accurate controller like that... yet with move or kinect or the wii i always end up back on the old school controller. they all seem to suffer some kind of latency (lag) and apart from the move (tumble, the block building game is the only software i have seen that demonstrates its potential) they arent very accurate. I have had some dev experience with kinect enabled stuff and its quite painful. Just give me a stick or a mouse and i am happy...

    I hope it comes with a giant pencil....what a bizarre thing to have in a schematic....We all totally have a giant pencil

    Flame on! I hope not that argument is so tired. I own both and I'm very impressed with the kinect and its potential. So the good thing about this is the oppurtunities it creates for third party developers and consumers. Sure its copying but good for the industry as a whole. That is if you like the technology haha.

    Filed in 2011... and yet they drew it plugged into a phat PS2? Interesting thinking there, Sony.

    Kinect combined with Move sounds like a good idea, I've always thought the worst thing about kinect is not having any buttons for direct input. The games are always going to be compromised in terms of avatar movement because there's no analog stick to control it.
    Using SOny's Nav peripheral in conjunction with Move and a kinect-like sensor would be fantastic. Particularly with the sharpshooter - that, combined with next-gen 3d potential, is bordering on VR.

    Ummmm Im pretty sure this is what the PSEye was doing with the PS2

    Looking at the picture, I would say thats a PS2, with the cabled controller and MASSIVE Tv

    How about designing a real light gun that works on LED & plasma TVs? Is that too much to ask? Sigh.

      Light guns were effectively a clever hack to begin with, and abused the fact that CRTs are scanline machines that update pixels in a sequential manner. The flash on the screen you saw aided in that process - when the device reported that it finally saw a white pixel, that's where you were aiming.

      Off the top of my head, a similar system for modern panels would probably require a fairly decent camera embedded in and a bit of image analysis to determine where it's pointing at. And just to make matters more fun, it'd need to determine the visual lag in your system to be anywhere near accurate. The amount of work you'd need to put in to avoid false positives and no results is a bit ridiculous.

      Thanks to the fact that there are many options for panels these days, the only feasible mass market solution is to work out how to make those additional peripherals accurately map out the screen.

        Just following up on that. It appears Namco's Guncon 3 does exactly what I was suggesting.

        (ie the last bit about using additional peripherals to map out a screen)

    The Move should have been a 2 part dual shock controller with a light on each part. They could actually be identical, just put OX∆[] on directional buttons. Sure you'd look like you're directing air traffic, but it would have been functional.

      In an effort to reduce the number of controllers I have, I'm kind of hoping that the PS4 controller will be a dual shock that can split in half to become 2 Move controllers but I can't think of a design that wouldn't look ridiculous..

    I'm still not totally convinced.. I've seen what Kinect can do in a lab.. motion-based controls have a lot of potential.

    No developer, actually make that no bankrolling publisher will put up to make a game that gives me a reason to want motion control yet. Until something comes along that just feels 'right' and isn't a gimmicky dance/rafting/pets/sports game I just don't see any reason to buy motion control.

      That's what comes next generation. Remember when the rumble pack or analogue sticks came along? Nobody really used them to even a fraction of their potential because they were bad investments. You couldn't make rumble an important part of the game because that would cut off the people who don't have the accessory. You're killing your potential market share.
      As soon as we saw sticks and rumble packs built into the standard controller that came with the console we saw massive improvements in the quality of use. If developers can count on a Kinect sensor being on every XBOX then we're going to start seeing some really awesome stuff.

      I think that's the thing. The only Kinect games I've seen which don't look like half-arsed on-rails games are the couple that Double Fine have put out, as they're not trying to hamfistedly use motion control in place of other (better, conventional) control methods.

      I've said this from the start - Kinect is great tech. I just don't think that gaming is its best use.

    At least Luke mentioned the Eyetoy argument, but i cant help but wonder a reverse trend happening. The eyetoy came out first, then later on they released some hero game and cheerleader game with a peripheral to work with the camera. This generation we saw PS move with the camera, and a patent to suggest a move back to the camera only.

    At the moment the kinect doesn't seem like anything special to me, besides work other people have done with it for use on other applications (i.e. motion controlled flying skynet robots). Last years E3, all i saw was kids games and features in games that seemed like there was still problems that need to be worked out (lag response in the Ghost Recon customization). Don't get me wrong, i still think motion technology has potential, it's just right now, it doesn't seem worth adopting.

    As much crap as I've given the SIXAXIS over the years I'd actually sort of like it if Kinect+SIXAXIS was the standard next generation. The Move/Wiimote were great, but traditional gaming would benefit a lot more by attaching these to the default controller. Then we can get pinata simulators and really experiement with using them in the traditional genres.

    i BOUGHT THE MOVE FOR $100 AND THE ANOLOG THING FOR $60 NEVER USED IT FOR A YEAR ...SOLD IT ALL FOR $40 move was the wost thing i have bought

    My girlfried bought Move last year. We each used it for a total of 2 days and never touched it again. The tech was fine, if a bit gimmicky, but the real killer was a lack of quality games. The same can be said of Kinect, however it has the advantage of positive press due to creative hacks. It may suck for games but I think its pretty cool that medical students are now tinkering with it to find creative uses.

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