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Gaming Smartphones To Be The Next Big Thing For Retailers

Retailers such as JB Hi Fi and The Good Guys could soon be selling a new type of smartphone designed specifically for gamers and made by PC gaming Companies including Razer, Acer and ASUS these models even include vapor-chamber cooling systems.

Last week Samsung announced new gaming features for their Note 9, but it is hard core gamers that are buying the new generation of gaming smartphones made by PC gaming brands.

The hottest smartphone offering in the gaming market is the Razer Smartphone and despite being launched last year arch rivals such as ASUS are still struggling to match their specs.

It remains the gaming phone with the best display, featuring an IGZO LCD screen with a 120Hz refresh rate. The phone runs on a Qualcomm 835 Snapdragon chip with 8GB of RAM and features dual, front-facing Dolby speakers.

That display hasn’t been matched, in part, because getting the components to include it in a phone can be difficult, Tom Moss, Razer’s mobile business unit director told Variety recently. Moss joined Razer when it bought his smartphone company, Nextbit Systems. It was that company’s Robin phone that formed the base for the Razer Phone.

He added that having that high refresh rate is also useless without some expansive software to control it. Without a software pairing, the result would be a bad experience, he said.

“We have engineers who were on the original Android team at Google to get it to work.”

That display hasn’t been matched, in part, because getting the components to include it in a phone can be difficult, said Tom Moss, Razer’s mobile business unit director. Moss joined Razer when it bought his smartphone company, Nextbit Systems. It was that company’s Robin phone that formed the base for the Razer Phone.

He added that having that high refresh rate is also useless without some expansive software to control it. Without a software pairing, the result would be a bad experience, he said.

“We have engineers who were on the original Android team at Google to get it to work.”

The Razer Phone also delivered a massive 4000mAh battery and that 8GB of Ram to its phone, but the components were ahead of their time when the device came out.

The result, Moss said, has exceeded Razer’s expectations for its first smartphone.

“We started a category,” Moss said. “Last year, most people thought of gaming on a phone as ‘Candy Crush.’ I think what people didn’t realize was how much the technology was advancing.

“Now, if you take a look at the top ten PC games out during the last Christmas holiday, most have come out on mobile.”

That includes dinosaur survival game “ARK: Survival Evolved,” a mobile takes on “Titanfall,” and direct ports of both “PUBG” and “Fortnite.”

“In some cases, they might even be better on the phone,” he said. “I prefer playing ‘PUBG’ on my phone rather than on my PC.”

Moss said Razer knew that its gaming-centric phone would be a hit, but the company was surprised by just how quickly the mass market’s perception of gaming on phones has changed.

“Before ‘PUBG’ and ‘Fortnite,’ people weren’t sure about mobile gaming in the West,” he said. “We knew we were kind of early, but literally by the end of Q1, the shift happened, a lot of high quality was coming out for mobile. A lot of team shooters. Not just games built for mobile. It’s surprised us, the pace in the West of moving toward mobile gaming.”

The popularity of gaming on a smartphone has not gone unnoticed at Samsung. A game developer actually took centre stage at the Note 9 launch with Epic Games president Tim Sweeney on stage not just to announce that the Android version of “Fortnite” would be premiering on Galaxy phones, but also to underscore the gaming prowess of its latest model, the Galaxy Note9.

While the new Note 9 isn’t being marketed as a gaming phone, gaming is everywhere in the Note 9 marketing. It’s a phone designed for movies — and gaming. For photos — and gaming. With a massive screen and long battery life — for gaming. The company calls it the “ultimate mobile gaming platform.”

And while there’s no clearer sign of Samsung’s commitment to gaming on the Note9 than who it invited on stage to speak during their New York event.

Variety said recently that The Republic of Gamer brand, which sells everything from motherboards to laptops and keyboards, started looking at the smartphone gaming landscape about a year and a half ago.

What they saw was that where once games on smartphones were small, short diversions, they were now starting to become full-blown, in-depth games.

Some were original, robust titles; others were ports of popular PC or console games. Gaming’s growing reach into smartphones was also driven by a more general growth of gaming culture into mainstream culture. Gaming was making the leap from a subculture to becoming a central, important part of mainstream culture.

“We thought, ‘What if we make a phone that is designed for gamers that still needs to work as a phone?’” Lien said.

While you can play games on just about any smartphone, the ROG team felt that there was a lot that it could bring to a phone if it was built specifically for gaming.

“For people spending a considerable amount of time playing games, we identified a few things that needed to be solved,” Lien said.

Heat dissipation was an early first problem. The longer you play a game on a smartphone, pushing the device to its limits, the hotter the device gets.

That impacts the comfort of using the phone, but more importantly, it impacts the phone’s ability to deliver those high-end graphics at fast speeds. The company also noted that most games, especially the high-end ones, are played with the phone in a horizontal position, but most phones are designed around being used vertically. Solving that issue meant moving ports — like the headphone jack and power port — around, which meant redesigning the entire structure of the phone’s PCBs.

What the company ended up with was a phone with a 6-inch AMOLED screen and 90Hz refresh rate. The phone runs on a 2.98GHz Qualcomm chip with 8GB of RAM and features a vapor-chamber cooling system.

There are front-facing twin speakers and enhanced haptics to help make the experience of gaming on the go feel a bit more visceral.

The phone even features touch points on the edge of the phone that the company calls “air triggers.” A software “x” mode essentially turns off all non-essential software and refocuses the phone’s entire power to the game being played. But ROG didn’t stop with the internal design.

The phone also supports an external active cooler that helps to maintain low temperatures for the device and, when attached, adds side ports to the device. ROG also sells a TwinView Dock for the phone which adds a second, 6-inch AMOLED screen, doubles the speaker count to four, adds two physical trigger buttons, another haptic feedback system, more cooling, and an extended battery, adding 6000mAh to the phone’s already massive 4000mAh battery.

And if that significant overkill isn’t enough, ROG also sells a desktop dock that essentially turns the phone into a computer that can plug into a monitor and which supports mouse and keyboard gaming.

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