Microsoft is working on a new and improved gaming controller that could potentially be issued with the rumoured Xbox Two console.
According to patent filings spied by Windows Latest, the company is planning to make significant improvements to the controller’s trigger technology.
Filings pertaining to motor-driven force-feedback and adjustable tension triggers could potentially result in a new generation of gamepads that would give game developers power to place different levels of resistance on the triggers, to match the action on screen.
Here’s how Microsoft describes the force-feedback technology in the application, which was published last month:
“Such a motor-driven, force-feedback trigger configuration enables the user-perceived state of the trigger to be dynamically adjusted in a variety of ways. For example, the trigger may be driven by the force-feedback motor to adjust a user-perceived resistance of the user-actuatable trigger. In another example, the trigger may be driven by the force-feedback motor to simulate a hard stop that effectively adjusts a pull length or range of rotation of the trigger. In another example, the trigger may be driven by the force-feedback motor to assist the trigger in returning to a fully-extended or “unpressed” posture when a user’ s finger is removed from the trigger. In another example, the trigger may be driven by the force-feedback motor to vibrate the trigger.”
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The second filing pertaining to the adjustable tension triggers explains how the trigger can be configured to pivot on an axis.
Microsoft writes: “The force-feedback motor is configured to drive the rack gear based on a force-feedback signal and thereby adjust a spring force applied by the return spring to the user-actuatable trigger.”
The patent filings follow rumours that a new Xbox Elite controller is in the works. However it’s equally possible these technologies could be built into the standard Xbox Two controller.
Recent speculation suggests Microsoft is working on a wide-ranging strategy for its next hardware, including a streaming-only box and a high-end machine offering 4K 60fps visuals. No launch is expected until 2020, but we should learn more as 2019 rolls around.
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