Reports of Razer working on a gaming smartphone have been circulating since early summer. Now it seems those rumors have a little more meat.
Min-Liang Tan, CEO and co-founder of Razer, avoided using the word "smartphone" but did confirm in an interview with CNBC that the company is developing a mobile gaming device.
“One of the most hotly rumored things about Razer is that we're coming up with a mobile device,” said the exec. “And I can say that we are coming up with a mobile device specifically geared toward gamers and entertainment.”
Tan also stated that they are aiming for a 2017 release.
Rumors of a mobile device surfaced after its acquisition of smartphone manufacturer Nextbit at the beginning of the year. Further fuel was added when the company nixed support for Nextbit’s cloud-based Robin smartphone. The thought is that Razer would only shut down an acquired asset if it was working on a similar branded product.
The company plans to use capital from an upcoming IPO to fund development.
“We would love to have that war chest to allow us to invest in R&D… Having that war chest from the IPO would allow us to do all that and much more. And that's what we want to continue doing: to make cool products.”
He did not reveal how much the IPO would yield but Reuters reported that the initial public offering would place the company on the market with a valuation of between $3 billion and $5 billion. The deal could raise about $400 million for the war chest.
Tan failed to disclose specifics of the device although it's a safe bet that it will not be a repeat of Project Fiona, Razer's gaming tablet. Whatever it is, it will have to be more innovative than a controller attached to a tablet if Razer plans to steal market share from well-established giants in the mobile market.
Top image by Pocket-lint