At the end of the day, company Sony DNA and “tradition” won the debate.
Sony isn’t ashamed to say that it even tried out the Xbox’s controller layout while trying to come up with the perfect fit for PS4. But after many vigorous tests and countless variations, the traditional DualShock layout won because it was part of Sony’s DNA and strong tradition.
“For the analog sticks, we did test having the analog sticks on top, since the Xbox has the left side on top [above the D-pad],” Sony’s Toshimasa Aoki told Venture Beat in a recent interview. “Especially from the shooter teams–we got feedback that that’s what they wanted. They knew that consumers liked the 360 for shooters.”
But as already stated above, tradition won the day: “The prototype team, myself, and also the management team really felt that having this look is the PlayStation look, and we had to keep that,” Aoki added.