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Sony Patent Shows Firm’s Interest in Blockchain and NFTs

A recently uncovered patent that was filed by Sony in July 2021 shows that the entertainment company has more than a casual interest in blockchain technology and non-fungible tokens (NFTs). The patent includes diagrams depicting how Sony plans to track whenever digital assets change ownership, how their visual appearance changes and how the accompanying metadata of those digital assets changes. The patent indicates that those assets could include in-game moments, characters or items within the game.

In a write-up that strongly suggests NFT-like assets, Sony’s patent lays out the specifics regarding the mechanisms that the company intends to use to monitor and keep tabs on the history of a specific item as it moves from player to player during a game. The patent claims that currently there isn’t a method to definitively distinguish a specific item that a renowned player made use of in order to win a game or tournament. The patent claims to have such a method, noting that the method will give individuals a unique opportunity to own and take pride in such a unique game or tournament-winning item. Such items hold special meaning to people, the filing asserts.

It is noteworthy that Sony PlayStation tendered this patent document in July last year when the media storm about NFTs hadn’t yet boiled over.

This patent filing isn’t PlayStation’s first interest in NFTs. During EVO 2O22, the company circulated a survey to players and fans seeking their views about any types of non-fungible tokens they may wish to buy. The answers obtained mentioned NFTs featuring esports, music artists, famous game characters and PlayStation paraphernalia as well as EVO-based NFTs.

Sony has a rewards program called PlayStation Stars. It includes digital collectibles that are handed out to qualifying recipients, but the company was quick to emphasize that those items weren’t NFTs since those cannot be sold or otherwise traded by the recipients.

It should be remembered that the video game industry has seen a lot of speculation this year regarding matters of non-fungible tokens, and several actors in this space have debuted their own products in this category. For example, GameStop unveiled its own wallet for NFTs and cryptos while EA (Electronic Arts) is actively assessing this technology. Other studios are vehemently opposed to the proliferation of NFTs in the video gaming niche, and a number of developers in this space have signed a petition denouncing or promising not to participate in creating this type of asset in the gaming field.

Regardless, Sony’s patent is further proof that blockchain technology is filtering through to all industries and sectors, and that if entities such as Canaan Inc. (NASDAQ: CAN) continue to expand their footprint, it is just a matter of time before this technology becomes commonplace.

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