You heard of Oculus VR because they were open to consumers since the beginning of their product cycle, not because they are ahead or because they started first.
As to when SCE started research into VR (2010), they are very frank about it. But unlike public companies SONY can't just be open about R&D with good reason.
You see the proof when you look at the PS4 and how tightly positional tracking and programmable audio (for positional audio) is implemented into the hardware.
This includes a lot more advanced and minuscule changes to hardware such as including a volatility bit into the frame buffer of the GPU in order to bypass buffering which can add to latency in VR rendering, all the way to the light bar on the DS4 and the high frame rate stereo camera (note how much cheaper it would have been just to do a good 1080p camera).
Note that, said modifications for the GPU would have to had been planned at least 2 to 3 years in advance before fabrication.
You pay for that LED on the DS4 even if you have zero interest in VR, and in mass production just think how much it adds to the cost of production. Just thinking about that should prove to us how hardcore SONY is about it's VR product plan.