Razer today introduced a new 5G gaming handheld developed in collaboration with Verizon and Qualcomm. It joins the growing list of Switch-inspired devices to benefit game pass and other video game streaming libraries. Because in 2022 everyone is counting on the successor to the PS Vita, which Sony never made. What is dead may never die.
Details about Razer’s handheld are still sparse. A short video reveals that it will have a built-in screen and dedicated controls, and will broadcast 5G signals straight to the airwaves with the push of a button. I’m sure the RGB chroma will be wild. It reminds me a lot of Razer’s existing Kishi controller adapter for smartphones. We’re supposed to find out more, such as whether the thing will cost a stupid amount of money, at the RazerCon keynote on October 15th.
The announcement comes just a week after Logitech introduced its $350 gaming handheld G Cloud. While the price was underwhelming considering you can buy a Switch OLED for the same amount and a more powerful Steam deck is just $400, the concept was solid: play mobile games natively and stream blockbusters online. The hardware also looked pretty slick.
That also perfectly describes Sony’s PS Vita innovative but unfortunate Premium gaming handheld. Not only was the Vita a perfect device for indie gaming with a touchscreen for basic mobile ports, but it also aimed to bring blockbuster lite gaming with exclusive first-party brands such as: Uncharted: Golden Abyss. Borderlands 2 kinda ran on it. You can use it to play some PS3 and PS4 games remotely. There was even a 3G model.
It was a massive flop until five years later when Nintendo did all of those things, with one key difference: it released the Switch alongside it breath of the wild. Fast forward another five years and cloud gaming has evolved to the point where it is possible to start a handheld even without exclusive hits. Game Pass might not Mario or zeldabut it has Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, Halo infinity, Stardew Valley, and hundreds of other games. No, cloud streaming isn’t perfect, but it works well enough at this point.
I have no idea if Razer’s 5G handheld will sell for a reasonable price, but I’m sure it won’t be the last device trying to capitalize on the new mobile gaming gold rush. If people are willing to pay $500 for an Apple Watch that isn’t a smartphoneI’m sure more than a few will pay half that for a dedicated cloud gaming device.
It’s a shame the PS Vita 2 won’t be one of the options. Sony handhelds are among the most beautiful to hold and look at. The Vita may have failed, but it paved the way for Switch, Steam Deck and half a dozen other new gaming handhelds this has only come out in the last couple of years. The Vita died so Razer’s 5G handheld could stream. We’ll find out soon enough if it’s worthy of that lineage.
https://kotaku.com/ps-vita-razer-5g-game-pass-cloud-streaming-handheld-1849593471 Razer teases Game Pass streaming handheld with 5G