Sony gets touchy-feely with new DualShock 4 controller for PS4

Sony's new flagship game console comes with an updated version of its DualShock series controller that adds touch.

Sony's Mark Cerny demos the DualShock 4 controller.
Sony's Mark Cerny demos the DualShock 4 controller. CNET

Turns out the leaks were right.

Alongside the unveiling of the PlayStation 4 today, Sony showed off the new controller that goes with it called the DualShock 4.

Key among the new features is a built-in touchpad that goes in the very center of the controller, adding an extra level of control and interaction with games and on-screen menus. There's also a built-in microphone jack, and a share button nestled next to the trigger buttons that lets gamers stream their gameplay live to friends in real-time.

Sony's lead system architect Mark Cerny demos the touchpad on the new PS4 controller.
Sony's lead system architect Mark Cerny demos the touchpad on the new PS4 controller. CNET

During its press conference, Sony promised that the new design improves the built-in rumble technology, as well as latency to cut down on lag between button presses and what's happening on screen. The new controller also makes use of a peripheral that plugs into the PS4 and senses your depth and 3D position.

The design matches up with a series of leaks that hit ahead of Sony's unveiling, although some outlets believed the touch sensitive area was actually a secondary display.

On top of the new DualShock 4, Sony demoed that the PlayStation 3's Move controller will still work with the PS4. That came into play during a demo from Media Molecule in a demo of an otherwise unannounced creation game, that used the Move to track gamer movement with what was happening on screen.

It's typical for console-makers to debut a new controller alongside new system hardware. Sony, for its part, launched its first PlayStation 3 controller without rumble, adding it later on with the DualShock 3.

No word yet on price and availability for the DualShock 4.

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Sony PlayStation 4

The Bottom Line: The PlayStation 4's beautiful graphics, blazing interface, near-perfect controller, and lower price give it a slight edge on the Xbox One -- for now. / Read full review

About the author

Josh Lowensohn joined CNET in 2006 and now covers Apple. Before that, Josh wrote about everything from new Web start-ups, to remote-controlled robots that watch your house. Prior to joining CNET, Josh covered breaking video game news, as well as reviewing game software. His current console favorite is the Xbox 360.



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