Not because the audio quality sucks.
What the article should really be called is “Who is going to design a pair of small Bluetooth headphones that provide great sound without making you look like a tool for wearing that massive Sony wireless headset?”, but for length reasons, that title wouldn’t work.
What we are really talking about is that, as the quality of audio in portable games gets better and better – see our article about the future of handhelds if you have no idea what we’re talking about – the need for a high-quality pair of wireless headphones is getting greater.
We say the headphones we have now aren’t going to work because no one wants to think that they have to carry around a set of headphones just to listen to the audio coming from Call of Duty Vita. But a wireless set of ‘phones that could be paired to your cell phone as well as your Vita might be just the trick. Heck, maybe you need to pair your phone with the Vita to get that kind of functionality going, but we need it.
Sony makes the most sense to develop a product like this. For one thing, they’re the king of hardware, but perhaps more importantly, the Vita is the only gaming handheld with Bluetooth, not counting things like iPhones, of course.
We’re not entirely sure we’ll see anything like this in the near future. Perhaps it would make for a great Kickstarter project and a small-time hardware manufacturer or pair of hipsters can make a few bucks selling them to the gaming population.
Audio is often the forgotten part of games and movies, but we challenge you: turn off the sound in a scary movie and see how scary it still is. Mute the TV when you play through Splinter Cell and suddenly, all the audio cues from what is traditionally a very quiet game go away and you’re left to wonder what is actually going on. Quality audio has the power to make us emote, to feel, and to really enter a game. As portable technology gets better and games have greater audio fidelity, we need hardware to show it off.