Qualcomm and Razer team on the new Snapdragon G3x handheld gaming developer kit
Razer looks set to enter the handheld gaming console space thanks to the emergence of a leak courtesy of VideoCardz. The site has been in receipt of slides that detail Qualcomm’s plans for its 2022 SoCs, some of which it has been showcasing at its Snapdragon Tech Summit 2021 which closes on December 1. Among the slides happens to be what is referred to as the ‘Snapdragon G3x Handheld Developer Kit’, which it has developed in conjunction with Razer.
This would suggest that the image of the console accompanying the article isn’t going to see the light of day as a release, but will be used by software developers and even other hardware vendors as a reference design for consoles that could be made using Qualcomm’s latest silicon. Unfortunately, at the time of writing, we don’t know much about the Snapdragon G3x as it adopts Qualcomm’s new naming scheme.
There are some other details about the developer kit that have been made public on the slide, however. It centers on an OLED panel with a 120 Hz refresh rate and support for HDR content, incorporates a hefty 6,000 mAh battery, supports DisplayPort out over USB-C along with Wi-Fi 6E support, Bluetooth 5.2 and 5G connectivity. It seems likely that Razer will launch its own version of the console featuring its signature looks, and if so, it would go head-to-head with devices like the x86-based Steam Deck from Valve and the similarly Arm-based Nintendo Switch.
An important question that remains to be asked is what approach to games and gaming a vendor making a console based on the new Snapdragon G3x Handheld Developer Kit might take. An option would be to run a custom version of Android on it with access to the Google Play Store. Another option would be to develop a custom OS for the device and create an entirely new gaming platform, but that would be expensive and challenging. Clearly, integration with cloud gaming services would also be an avenue. Regardless, it is an interesting proposition and one which we will closely be watching evolve over the coming months.