In an alternative dimension there's a world out there somewhere where Sony just launched a PS4 with a buttonless controller.
At the very start, we were thinking of drastically changing the controller,” Sony Computer Entertainment's product planning manager Toshimasa Aoki told VentureBeat. We tried out new devices, changing the form factor.
So we made, I don't know, more than 20 prototypes. Some had no buttons, just touch panels. Some tried out [all-touchscreen controls]. They felt that it would be a good new input which the buttons or the sticks can't do.
The vote on that was probably 100-0.”
Sony apparently also trialled a rear touchpad like the one seen with Vita. In fact, it at one stage had a prototype device that allowed users to move the touchpad around to different positions.
Another idea that was thrown around was the inclusion of a touchscreen as opposed to simply a touchpad, although apparently the team felt like having to look down at the controller is not what they want to do – they want to have the consumers concentrated on the big picture that they show [on the TV]”.