Sony files patent application for Kinect-like device for PlayStation

Illustration from the patent application showing how virtual objects could be inserted int...A recently published patent application indicates that Sony may be working on a Kinect-like 3D depth-sensing device for PlayStation. If Sony follows through with development of such a device, it will no doubt be looking to make up some ground lost to Microsoft, whose release of the Kinect in November 2010, overshadowed the release of Sony’s PlayStation Move just a month earlier.

Like the Kinect, Sony’s patent application for a “User driven three-dimensional gaming environment,” involves the use of a 3D depth sensing camera to allow users to interact with virtual objects on a screen in a 3D space. The patent application also mentions visually altering the onscreen appearance of real world physical objects – mapping of virtual clothing to the user, for example.

With the current PlayStation Eye sporting only a standard video camera, Sony will have to produce a new peripheral capable of obtaining distance or depth information. The application lists infrared or stereo cameras as possible technologies to accomplish this.

Seems like Sony is a bit late, (again)!

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