The PlayStation 5 didn’t just usher in the next generation of Sony’s gaming platform, it also introduced a new controller that breaks away from previous generations in more than just the name. For one, the DualSense changed the decades-old arrangement for the Japanese version, making it identical to the rest of the world. It also added more sensors and switched to haptic feedback in this iteration. It may have also broken compatibility with some DualShock accessories, explaining why a patent for a Back Button Attachment for the DualSense just popped up.
The DualShock 4 Back Button Attachment was a stroke of genius. It allowed the addition of two configurable buttons on the back of the gamepad without actually changing the design of the controller itself. In contrast, Microsoft had to launch dedicated Xbox Elite controllers that featured programmable back paddles to that effect.
The Back Button Attachment was meant to be an ergonomic option for gamers of all types. It was especially useful for those with smaller hands or those with physical handicaps that find it hard to comfortably reach for the shoulder buttons. It’s definitely something that the DualSense should also have and it might still do, at least in the near future.
Unfortunately, the DualShock 4 Back Button Attachment seems to be incompatible with the latest generation of the PlayStation controller. That’s probably why Sony had to go and apply for a patent for a “Controller Add-on Device with Customizable Presets” that looks exactly like the DualShock 4 accessory, despite probably holding a patent for the latter anyway.
What remains unknown at this point is when such an add-on will be launched in the market. Hopefully not as long as it took Sony to launch the original. There’s also the question of what features this DualSense version might have, though the brief description of the patent doesn’t exactly inspire much hope in that regard.