The Rise of AYANEO in Handheld Gaming Market
The market of handheld gaming has been booming considerably in the past few years. Mobile Gaming was always a trend, since the days of Nintendo’s Game Boy. However, we did not see much competition in this field during the past ten years. That started to change with the Nintendo Switch, which saved Nintendo after the disastrous Nintendo Wii U. It also gave the company a unique position in the video game market. With the trending PC gaming, many companies started to consider building their own portable PCs that could run games as handheld consoles. That gave birth to devices like the Steam Deck, ASUS ROG, and many of AYANEO consoles.
AYANEO is a brand that has been trending recently with the launch of multiple handheld PCs promising compelling gaming experience while on the go. The Chinese brand was f0unded in 2020 and quickly stole the headlines due to its interesting handheld gaming devices. AYANEO has been building a diverse portfolio of handheld consoles in the past years. Currently, it offers powerful handhelds that are comparable to expensive PCs with strong CPUs and GPUs and also has some modest options for mobile gaming and cloud-gaming services.
The market of handheld consoles is booming, and AYANEO has interesting plans for the future. Today, we have the pleasure of speaking with AYANEO’s CEO, Arthur Zhang. Join us in this interview as we delve into this company’s journey in the trending market of handheld PCs. Learn more about AYANEO’s history in this field, and what the company has in tow for the future.
Could You Tell us A little about AYANEO, Its History and How it began its journey in this gaming field?
Arthur Zhang: I can briefly talk about the origins of our first official product. Our AYANEO founding team had a dream to create a high-performance Windows handheld gaming device many years ago. It was at that time when AMD’s mobile processors made significant advancements, and with a mentality to give it a try, we contacted AMD and informed their China team about our desire to create an outstanding Windows handheld gaming device using AMD processors.
We were unsure if AMD had plans to develop dedicated processors for handheld gaming devices at that time, but they provided us with unprecedented support and assistance, ranging from product development to the resources of the supply chain. AMD even had their friends act as product managers to help us create the world’s first Windows handheld gaming device based on AMD processors.
Today, you can see that AMD processors have already taken a leading position in the Windows handheld gaming field, and we have become a well-known handheld gaming brand globally. Our collaboration has been a win-win situation, and we maintain a good working relationship. We will continue to work together in creating even more powerful Windows handheld gaming devices.
The market of gaming handhelds is trending lately with so many new releases. Could you give us more details about AYANEO and its push into the handheld market, and what are the brand’s goals in this competitive field?
Our goal is simple: to create the purest Windows handheld gaming device in the world because the essence of handheld gaming is about having fun. We hope that AYANEO users can experience the purest joy on our handheld gaming devices.
Of course, as our company grows, we plan to launch more categories of products to satisfy the diverse needs of users within our capabilities. We aim to provide users with a comprehensive product line based on insights into their demands. Currently, we have established product lines for Windows handheld gaming devices and Android handheld gaming devices, offering gamers a wide range of choices. In the future, we will further expand into other product categories to meet the needs of more users.
With competition rising continuously, with more and more players joining the market, what are AYANEO’s plans, will continue investing on powerful hardware to challenge the competition?
Arthur Zhang: With the entrance of some major brands, competition in the handheld gaming field has indeed become more intense than before. But this situation confirms that our strategic judgment from two or three years ago was correct, so from the very beginning, I never limited AYANEO’s development strategy to a small field or a specific product type.
Increasing investment in technology research and development to create more competitive products is definitely part of our future development strategy. Based on this, we will also build a more comprehensive product line based on insights into user needs, providing users with segmented product choices.
We have already established product lines for Windows handheld consoles and Android handheld consoles, providing gamers with a wide range of choices. In the future, we will further expand into other categories to meet the needs of more users.
The AYANEO Pocket Air is the company’s first Android handheld. It’s also great for cloud gaming, the company plans to invest more on handhelds made for cloud gaming services?
Arthur Zhang: Regarding the Android handheld gaming category, we have clear plans and will introduce more exquisite Android handheld gaming devices to provide users with a first-class software and hardware experience. For example, the previously announced AYANEO Pocket S will be equipped with the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon G3x Gen2 flagship processor, featuring high-end material craftsmanship and artistic design, making it a beautiful and powerful high-end Android handheld gaming device.
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Of course, we will also release Android handheld gaming devices with different positioning and forms. They will not only be great for playing retro games but, as you mentioned, will also provide excellent experiences for cloud gaming and streaming games.
Which product will be AYANEO’s flagship against the likes of Steam Deck and ROG Ally?
If we consider screen size, AYANEO 2S would be a good choice. Compared to Steam Deck and ROG Ally, AYANEO 2S has a higher screen-to-body ratio and exquisite narrow bezels, offering a more comfortable grip with its ergonomic design.
However, as I mentioned, AYANEO aims to build a more comprehensive product series to compete in the market. Currently, we have AYANEO KUN with a larger screen size and stronger performance, as well as the more lightweight and portable AYANEO AIR 1S. They, along with AYANEO 2S, cover the diverse needs of gamers. We will continue to iterate on different series of products and constantly improve our product quality to meet industry challenges.
The Company has plans of making more affordable handhelds in the future?
Arthur Zhang: We have made attempts in this aspect, such as the Intel and Mendocino versions of AYANEO AIR Plus, which were well received by many gamers. The Android handheld gaming device Pocket AIR is also a cost-effective choice. Of course, we prioritize providing gamers with a high-quality comprehensive experience, which places higher demands on both software and hardware, making cost control a significant challenge.
However, these challenges also drive us to make continuous progress. Therefore, we will always do our best to provide gamers with cost-effective products. Next, we will launch handheld gaming devices with different price ranges, but regardless of the price, we will strive to deliver a first-class experience to gamers.
Arthur Zhang: What do you think are the competitive advantages of AYANEO over other brands at this stage?
When it comes to AYANEO, I believe many gamers first think of our leading industry design capabilities and aesthetics, which are our prominent advantages at the moment. However, our strengths go beyond that. Since our first official product, AYANEO handheld gaming devices have had top-quality screens in the industry. We have also collaborated with Guli Technology to develop innovative hall-effect joysticks, providing AYANEO handheld gaming devices with superior control experiences compared to other competitors.
We have also developed the AYASpace management software specifically for Windows handheld gaming devices, offering a professional and comprehensive handheld gaming software experience. The new AYASpace 2 and the AYASpace retro game management frontend on Android handheld gaming devices allow gamers to experience convenient handheld and game management features.
Recent AYANEO consoles have been showing a beautiful design that makes them unique when compared to competition. Can you guive more details about AYANEO’s design philosophy for the design of its consoles?
Arthur Zhang: It’s actually quite simple. In terms of exterior design, we pursue an ultimate elegant and original design. We have high requirements for design styles and color schemes, which often require us to put in a lot of effort in structural or material innovations to achieve the desired effects. In addition to that, we were the first brand to introduce colorful and artistic design styles to Windows handheld gaming devices.
We were the first to incorporate classic retro elements into Windows handheld gaming devices, creating the highly acclaimed “Retro Power” color scheme. Later, we collaborated with the trendy brand B.Duck to launch various stylish B.Duck limited edition color schemes, initiating a wave of limited edition color schemes for Windows handheld gaming devices. We have become more proficient in creating appealing color schemes and combine them with high-end craftsmanship and materials to ensure that AYANEO handheld gaming devices have excellent visual and tactile experiences.
Of course, we do not blindly pursue industrial design to the extent of neglecting practicality. In fact, each of our handheld gaming devices applies a considerable amount of ergonomic design. For example, the sliding full keyboard SLIDE and the flip handheld gaming device FLIP both provide keyboards that offer the most comfortable experience according to user habits. From the streamlined design of the handle to every detail of the body, we carefully optimize to ensure that gamers can have a comfortable experience.
So far what has been the feedback coming from the audience when it comes to your efforts in industrial design?
Arthur Zhang: Thanks to our persistence in industrial design, many gamers and media are full of praise for the appearance of the AYANEO handheld console. Even compared to some major brands, they express a greater preference for the design of our handheld console. To receive recognition from gamers for our pursuit of ultimate industrial design is the best reward for us.
Of course, it’s not just gamers, professional organizations have also given us high praise. In October, the AYANEO 2S, which features a borderless design, won the 2023 Japan G-Mark Design Award. To receive recognition from the prestigious “Eastern Design Oscars” known as the Japan G-Mark Design Award is the best proof of our industrial design strength.