With the proliferation of streaming and gameplay sharing lately, Sony is looking into a function that allows viewers to better interact with streamers and Let’s players in real time.

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Sony Interactive Entertainment filed a patent with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) entitled “Player Feedback to Increase Viewership in Video Games.” The patent was filed in March 2021 but was officially published and made public on 7 October.

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Patent filings have rough sketches for the basic idea of ​​what they want to do. On one hand, there are clearly overlayed boxes at the top of the gameplay that look like players can ask the audience questions and the audience answers, allowing the streamer to see how they voted. On the other side is a box saying “Spectator Profile Data” with graphs showing the distribution of spectator age, region and player level. This is intended as a stand-in graph just to show the idea of ​​what Sony intends to do with this patent.

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Image of Sony's intended streamer and viewer patent on the left with viewer input on the viewer metrics on the right

The patent further details the systems that will run in the background. Additional information includes interactions between game systems, streaming or cloud gaming services, more specific player metrics, and many highly technical charts, graphs, and descriptions. This information is detailed in supplementary figures, images, text and graphs throughout the document.

The general idea of ​​the patent appears to be to improve the quality of streamer and viewer interactions on Sony products and services. There are some functions on other streaming platforms that are intended to do the same thing, but this patent seeks to add it at the hardware or firmware level. It seems likely that this function will allow viewers to view content with specific gameplay styles, such as more aggressive or stealthy play, and things of that nature. Think of the games that are popular among streamers like life is weird Series and other narrative games that may focus on player choice with audience input. This function is meant to improve activity and engagement between streamers and their viewers, if used as intended.

Such patent filings are the standard in the field if the technology is developed that allows it to progress into a tangible asset. It joins a long list of active Sony patents. The WIPO patent is only for Sony if they develop the technology to implement it. This does not mean that this function will proceed as such or that the Company will be allowed to proceed with the idea.

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