Sony has licensed eye-tracking technology for the PlayStation VR2 headset.
That’s according to manufacturer Tobii — the self-proclaimed “global eye-tracking leader and pioneer of attention computing” — who announced Friday that its technology will be included in the PlayStation 5 VR headset.
“PlayStation VR2 lays a new foundation for immersive virtual reality (VR) entertainment and enables millions of users around the world to experience the power of eye-tracking,” said Anand Srivatsa, CEO of Tobii, in a statement.
“Our partnership with Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE) is an ongoing validation of Tobii’s industry-leading technology capabilities to deliver advanced solutions on a mass market scale.”
The company will receive upfront revenue from 2022 as part of this deal, it said.
Tobii sells eye and head tracking cameras for a suggested retail price of $230 / £230. The cameras use a custom infrared optical sensor to track users’ eye movements, with support in more than 50 games, including Far Cry 6 and Flight Simulator.
Supported games can then be controlled with eye movements for functions such as aiming and selecting items, with images even moving in and out of focus based on what the player is looking at.
Tobii is also making a PC application that tracks head movements only on compatible gaming laptops, allowing users to control in-game cameras.
During the specification announcement earlier this year, Sony confirmed its intention to include eye-tracking in PSVR2, and even detail what the feature would do.
“With eye tracking, PS VR2 detects the movement of your eyes, so a simple glance in a specific direction can create an additional input for the game character,” it said.
“This allows players to interact more intuitively and in new and lifelike ways, enabling heightened emotional response and enhanced expression, bringing a new level of realism to gaming.”
SIE has also confirmed that the new headset will support Foveated rendering, a rendering technique that uses an eye tracker to essentially improve the graphics quality of VR software by reducing the image quality in the user’s peripheral vision.
The new headset still doesn’t have an official release window, but Sony recently claimed it will have more than 20 games ready for the PlayStation VR 2 launch.