Some VR fans would like to use their Playstation VR 2 on the PC. But this scenario is very unlikely, according to a developer.
A YouTuber spread the rumor on Sunday that Sony’s new VR headset could possibly be used on a PC. He was told that the Playstation VR 2 is “”pretty much ready”” for it.
That would be good news for PC VR users, because the Playstation VR 2 offers technical features like eye tracking and a high-contrast OLED display at a comparatively low price.
However, many VR fans disagreed with the rumor. The developer and VR enthusiast JustDaven referred via Twitter to the developer’s assessment of iVRy two months ago. iVRy is a SteamVR driver that allows using the original Playstation VR on the PC.
So many people want to see if #PSVR2 could be used for #PCVR and I’ve been told it’s pretty much ready to do so. Let’s hope it happens. Original post?https://t.co/UaCxFRp88z pic.twitter.com/Ifb3wsCUga
– ???????? ?? (@GAMERTAGVR) January 15, 2023
A PC VR hack could take years to complete
The developer writes on Reddit that you shouldn’t buy Playstation VR 2 in hopes of being able to use it on PC anytime soon. There is a good chance that this will not be possible, he said.
“The original PSVR is (electronically) equivalent to a monitor and so it it is relatively simple to get a video signal up on it. Reading sensors etc. took a lot of reverse engineering, and at least a year from release before anyone figured that out. It then took a couple more years before it was usable as a PC VR headset. Tracking and controllers (using the original hardware) is still very much a work in progress, over 5 years from release. That is without Sony making any effort to prevent non PS4 users from using it.”
Sony might have encrypted the signals of the Playstation VR 2 to prevent them from being used on devices besides the PS5, the developer says. And even if that weren’t the case, it could take several years before even an image is displayed in the headset. You would also have to develop your own tracking software and drivers for the Sense controllers – a major challenge.
“I would say it is very unlikely that the PSVR2 would be useable for PCVR within 5 years of its release,” sums up his assesment.
Sony earns from software, not hardware
And what if Sony released a PC VR launcher that enabled compatibility with PCs?
This scenario is also unlikely. After all, what would Sony gain from it? The company mainly earns from the software and not from the hardware’s margins. Even at a price of $550 / 600 Euros, Sony probably does not earn much or even anything from the Playstation VR 2.
If Playstation VR 2 could be used over PC VR, software revenue would go into Valve’s or Epic’s pockets instead of Sony’s, and consumers would have one less reason to buy a Playstation 5 and invest money in Sony’s gaming ecosystem.
Of course, Sony could build its own PC store or expand PS Now for its own exclusive games, but that just for the VR niche? That is rather unlikely. Besides, who would buy a PC VR headset just for Sony exclusive VR games?
The reverse is more likely. Sony could release exclusive PSVR2 games for PC VR platforms a year or two after launch to further monetize them, JustDaven says. There are examples like Horizon Zero Dawn, Days Gone, and The Last of Us that have been or will be released for the PC.