The PlayStation Eye enables users to communicate online, record and upload both video and still-shots, and even play specially designed games without a controller. The hardware consists of an optical camera & a 4 microphone array, and connects to the console via a USB plug. The camera has the ability to capture video at 60 fps at a resolution of 640x480 or at 120fps at a resolution of 320x240, and was engineered to work well in low light environments. In addition the camera has an adjustable lens that can be set for close-ups or wide-angle recording. The microphone array housed in the PlayStation Eye was designed to reduce background noise and focus on spoken word.
The PlayStation Eye has various uses in games and software on the PS3. In the XMB, users can video chat with up to 6 other systems simultaneously, and can also record, edit, and upload videos & pictures using software in the XMB.
Games take advantage of the PlayStation Eye in a number of different ways. Some games, like Aquatopia & Kung Fu Live use the input from the device as their controlling mechanism. Other games like Singstar & Buzz Quiz employ the device to capture & upload video or photos. In the games Zen Pinball and High Stakes Poker, players can use the camera to video chat with each other while playing the game. In Fight Night Round 4 the player can take multiple pictures of their face (from different angles) and develop a 3D model of their head in real-time. This representation can then be used to create a custom character to use in the game.
For a full list of games that support the PlayStation Eye, see the PlayStation Eye support page here. (The PlayStation Eye is not compatible with EyeToy games created for the PlayStation 2.)
The PlayStation Eye is an integral part of Sony's motion controller, the PlayStation Move. Using the illuminated sphere on top of the Move controller, the Eye can track the player's movement in 3 dimensions by sensing the sphere's image size and speed. Depending on the game, the camera can also place the player's image into the gameworld, and map objects onto the Move so that the player appears to holding weapons, tools, or other objects.
The PlayStation 4 is compatible with a successor to the PlayStation Eye that features stereoscopic dual cameras able to sense the depth of the environment in front of it and four microphones capable of accurate sound detection and source origination.
The new PlayStation®Camera will support the PlayStation Move motion controller with more precision than ever before. As well as being able to track the 3D location of the DualShock 4 via its light bar.