Patents coming from Microsoft are now suggesting that new features and improvements to the Xbox One controller may be in the works.
Even though this has nothing to do with the Xbox 2 or the PS5 both speculated to release in 2020, Microsoft isn’t done playing with the Xbox One yet. After seeing an original VCR Xbox One, followed by the Xbox One S, an finally the Xbox One X, this time they’re making adjustments to the controller.
Specifically, the patent seems to be fixated on the controller’s triggers. The patents were granted to Microsoft in December. One of them granted on December 6, 2018, was titled “INPUT DEVICE WITH LINEAR GEARED FEEDBACK TRIGGER.” This could mean nothing else than the trigger itself. And it focuses on improving the existing controller with an abstract that reads:
A user-input device includes a user-actuatable trigger configured to pivot about a trigger axis, a rack gear interfacing with the user-actuatable trigger, a force-feedback motor including a drive gear interfacing with the rack gear, and a posture sensor configured to determine a posture of the user-actuatable trigger about the trigger axis. The force-feedback motor is configured to drive the rack gear based on a force-feedback signal.
And then a second patent was filed. This one titled “MOTOR-DRIVEN ADJUSTABLE-TENSION TRIGGER” and was released on the same day. This patent features a trigger that allows for resistance that can be adjusted when pressure applied to the triggers is detected. So you can literally feel like you’re aiming down the sights and pulling the trigger with resistance, as I imagine because the abstract reads:
A user-input device includes a user-actuatable trigger configured to pivot about a trigger axis, a rack gear, a return spring operatively intermediate the user-actuatable trigger and the rack gear, a force-feedback motor and a posture sensor configured to determine a posture of the user-actuatable trigger about the trigger axis. The return spring is configured to forward bias the user-actuatable trigger toward an extended posture. 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 description reads.
Without getting into too much technicality, it sounds like they want to implement some kind of new feedback mechanism to the current lifeless triggers on modern day consoles. Whether or not they’ll make it to the Xbox One, who knows? But it’s something they could be working on for their next console. Console innovation is usually what players focus on.
But if Microsoft is focusing on the controller, Sony will have to step up their game to stay competitive with the scene. Don’t second guess Sony though, because they’ve created a pretty good piece of hardware themselves.