It seems as if the market for Android-powered gaming consoles is gathering steam. Today at CES 2015, the high-end gaming tech company Razer publicly announced that it would be soon making its first foray into the market with the launch of the Razer Forge TV, which is a 4 x 4 inch, micro-console device retailing for $100.
Razer’s plans are to utilize three routes to appeal to gamers, catering to hardcore PC gamers, Android games, as well as Android-based entertainment services via Google Play. The device is expected to hit shelves by the first quarter of this year.
Razer has also announced a slew of accessories to go along with Forge TV
In order to support the Forge TV, Razer has also announced a slew of other products that it will be launching to coincide with the gaming device. These are the Serval gaming controller, the Turret keyboard and a magnetized mouse called the Nabu X. There is also a virtual reality headset in the pipeline, and all products will be Bluetooth-based for an extended connectivity range.
During the announcement, Razer explained how the upcoming Forge TV would include all the features required to cater to a market of serious gamers. It is designed to accommodate up to four people at a time and includes a 2.5 GHz quad-core Snapdragon processor for fast responsive times. Graphics will be vivid with the inclusion of the Adreno 420 GPU engine and the device will have 16 GB memory and 2 GB RAM.
Android powered gaming consoles are neither new nor have they gained proper traction, so Razer’s Forge TV will be an interesting case study
Razer also plans on developing its own software suite to cater to the Forge TV. Tentatively titled Cortex Steam, the software will focus on low-latency and HD resolution and shall support DirectX 9 and above. The company believes these specifications will help overcome lags and other hiccups. Also, like other mainstream gaming consoles, this device will also act as an entertainment hub, allowing users to stream music, videos and photos on their televisions.
Min-Liang Tan, the CEO and co-founder of Razer has high hopes for the upcoming console. He believes that whilst Google definitely has digital entertainment ambitions for its Android platform, the lack of a strong gaming product is hurting these efforts. The Forge TV will attempt to plug that hole.
Furthermore, with its low price, the console is bound to gain traction amongst both casual and hardcore gamers alike. “The greatest barriers to entry for new technology and price and complexity, and we’ve managed to eliminate both,” he said.