So far, the only Sony DualSense variant on the market is the DualSense Edge ($199 at Amazon). Its prohibitive price is justified by the abundance of “Pro” features and accessories. A newly discovered patent list (via GameRant) shows that Sony is planning to release a brand new version of the DualSense soon.
The most radical change would affect the touchpad, which would now function as a screen. The new DualSense uses this screen to assist players with button prompts, with the buttons themselves (analog sticks and triggers included) lighting up when necessary. Sony is said to be using “the power of machine learning and AI” to determine the best action for a player after monitoring their input.
In theory, this should help make difficult games accessible to more players. Ideally it should be disabled by default, otherwise it kills the challenge of a game. On the other hand, poorly trained AI could lead to incorrect reports from the DualSense, which would further degrade the gaming experience. . One could also argue that the controller could become a true “easy mode” for games that don’t have this option.
It’s also worth noting that companies are known to file patents and keep them for decades. The new DualSense needs a complete redesign due to the AI and likely touchscreen. Additionally, both features require an in-device processor, further increasing cost and overall complexity. It is therefore possible that it will not see the light of day so quickly and will even be presented at the same time as the PlayStation 6.