Sony unveils new XR headset and controllers for spatial content creation

SONY XR head mounted display and controllers

In a surprise announcement during its CES 2024 presentation, Sony revealed a new XR head-mounted display and controllers designed for “spatial content creation.” While lacking an official name, the headset features a matte gray finish, reminiscent of the PSVR2, with two outward-facing cameras at the front. The hardware, targeted at creators and artists, is set to launch later in 2024, with pricing details yet to be disclosed.

The XR headset runs on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon XR2+ Gen 2 chip, eliminating the need for a connected computer. The device boasts dual 4K OLED microdisplays, promising a “crisp viewing experience” and “intuitive interaction for 3D design.” Sony envisions the headset as a tool for professionals, akin to its line of professional-level cameras and devices. The headset incorporates a “video see-through” feature. It equips six cameras and sensors to enable user and space tracking for mixed reality experiences.

This new XR headset from Sony enables spatial content creation with some cool controlling features

Accompanying the XR headset are two controllers: a “ring controller” for manipulating objects and a “pointing controller” for more traditional pointing interactions. Sony envisions creators using both controllers in tandem with traditional input devices like keyboards to craft 3D models in real-time. The company has fine-tuned the headset’s balance with a center of gravity adjustment. You can also flip the display portion up and out of your field of vision. It enables seamless transitions between the virtual and physical worlds.

Sony positions the XR headset more as a creative tool than a direct competitor to Apple’s Vision Pro, targeting spatial content creation similar to Microsoft’s HoloLens. Sony showcased a user manipulating a bipedal robot, controlling its arm through the headset and controllers. The company emphasizes the ability to review and collaborate on work remotely through third-party creative apps.

While the announcement (via The Verge) provided an initial glimpse, further details and hands-on experiences will be available at Sony’s booth during the event.

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