Users of the original PlayStation VR headset are quickly accustomed to moving the screen away from their face when they need to take a quick look at their surroundings. This will not be necessary on PSVR 2, which will use the transit camera to provide a black and white view of the real world environment.
In a post on the PlayStation Blog on Tuesday, Sony discussed how PSVR 2 users can activate this pass-through function using a dedicated button on the headset or through the Control Center menu while using the device. Powered by four mounted cameras that also provide positional tracking without any external hardware, the Crossover is similar to that offered by competing headphones like the Oculus Quest.
Sony said players will not be able to record the transit show using the PS5’s built-in recording options. But players with a PS5 HD camera will be able to film themselves while in VR and overlay that image on the gameplay view for broadcast purposes.
PSVR 2’s outdoor cameras can also be used to automatically detect furniture and other obstacles in the room, automatically creating a 3D model that helps determine the safe and usable space for VR play. Players will be able to manually set or adjust the limits of the playing area, as with similar headsets.
Cinema Mode will also return to the original PSVR, displaying 2D content on a virtual screen in 1080p HDR and up to 120Hz.
After first announcing the updated headset last February, Sony detailed other new PSVR 2 features like eye tracking, 2000 x 2400 resolution per eye, and a console connection that uses a single cable.
In 2017, Sony filed a patent detailing a manufacturing method that could end the “lens flare” problem of twilight rays in VR headsets. Despite this, Sony has not publicly announced this feature for PSVR 2.
Although Sony has yet to announce a price or release date for its next VR headset, a Chinese supply chain report from January indicated that Sony hopes to ship 5 million units by the end of 2022.