This is one slick concept machine. Razer, the maker of high-end precision gaming products, revealed a concept mobile PC designed for gamers on the go. The Razer Switchblade is based on the Intel Atom processor and packs an ultra-sensitive, 7-inch capacitive multitouch touchscreen (1024 x 600) and a dynamic tactile keyboard. The keyboard is the most intriguing part of the design; key layout and configuration can be changed on-the-fly based on game content and user requirements. For example, it can serve as a standard QWERTY keyboard as you’re browsing a website inside a browser and the next minute it can morph into a keyboard made specifically to play a game like World of Warcraft where the keys become quick access points for magical potions and spells. So how does it all work? Easy; just like the top half of the device, the keyboard is actually a large LCD screen in disguise with physical keys layered on top of it. Inside the custom Razer OS skin the user can tweak the keyboard to make the keys function however they want. Customization is left up to the user’s imagination. Sure, you can make the keys display video playback controls such as play, pause, fast-forward, etc.; but Razer is a gaming company at heart and they are hoping that gamers will find the customization options to be helpful in optimizing the way they play games on the go when a full keyboard and mouse combo are not present.
As awesome as that keyboard hopes to be, keep in mind that the Switchblade is still a portable notebook. Razer’s custom skin can be hidden to reveal a standard copy of Windows 7. There are also USB ports (so a mouse can theoretically be connected), a mini HDMI port, and a webcam. Bluetooth and WiFi are also inside. The company is still determining whether or not to pack 3G capability with it. That’s right–this concept notebook unveiled at CES 2011 is actually coming to market in the near future. Razer is mum on exact release date and price, but you can expect to see this portable gaming machine attempt its transformation of the mouse/keyboard paradigm sometime within the next year or so. Full PR after the break.
The Razer Switchblade powered by the Intel® Atom™ processor redefines Mouse/Keyboard Interface for mobile gamers with an all new ultra-sensitive multi-touch screen and dynamic tactile keyboard
Consumer Electronics Show, Las Vegas, Nevada – January 6, 2011 – Razer, the world’s leading brand of high-end precision gaming products announced today the development of an innovative concept design, based on the Intel® Atom™ processor, bringing traditional PC desktop gaming to a portable form factor.
The new Intel® Atom™ powered concept model, codenamed “Razer Switchblade”, brings an evocative level of design to gaming by replacing the traditional mouse and keyboard interface with an ultra-sensitive multi-touch screen, dynamic tactile keyboard, and an intelligent user interface that adjusts the configuration and key layout on-the-fly based on game content and user requirements.
The Razer Switchblade concept was created from the ground up by Razer designers and engineers, in collaboration with Intel; focusing on enhancing the entire user experience of playing the extensive PC game library on a handheld device.
“The main problem with mobile PC gaming so far is that no one has been able to port the full mouse and keyboard experience onto a small size portable solution,” said Min-Liang Tan, CEO and Creative Director, Razer. “By combining adaptive on-the-fly controls and display, we managed to maintain the full tactile keyboard in a miniature computer while saving valuable screen estate.”
“PC Gaming continues to attract innovation with rich 3-D graphics, high definition video, and life-like animation,” said Brad Graff, director of gaming platforms for Intel’s Ultra Mobility Group. “The Intel® Atom™ processor, combined with Razer’s expertise in bringing gaming solutions to market, will help make it possible for consumers to have a powerful gaming experience in mobile devices.”
“With our established focus on human interface devices, moving the mouse and keyboard experience to the next level was a natural step.” continues Min-Liang Tan. “Razer isn’t just about bringing innovation to the PC, but creating products that will change the future of gaming. The Razer Switchblade is one such product.”
About the Razer Switchblade Concept
The Razer Switchblade Concept is a breakthrough portable gaming device model that allows gamers to play on the go without giving up the precision and control ordinarily possible on a desktop gaming system. Integrating two multi-touch seven-inch screens, and an innovative tactile dynamic keyboard, the Razer Switchblade Concept delivers the full desktop experience in a netbook sized solution.
For more information, please visit: www.razerzone.com/Switchblade