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Razer

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Razer Phone hands-on: 120Hz displays on phones need to happen immediately

When Razer purchased Nextbit last year, fans were understandably concerned that the company might be gobbled up by the gaming-focused brand for its intellectual property and engineering talent, without explicit intent to produce another smartphone. Well, those concerns can (obviously) be laid to rest: Razer built a phone. And by Razer, I mean the former Nextbit team working inside Razer. It's called the Razer Phone. Creative, I know.

One look at the Razer Phone will have you saying "Nextbit Robin 2.0." The styling is clearly derivative of Nextbit's, down to the sharply squared-off edges and large bezels. But gone is the Robin's two-tone paint scheme, instead replaced with a black rubberized finish designed to resist fingerprints and add grip.

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The Razer Phone is official—120Hz 'Ultramotion' display, Snapdragon 835, 8GB RAM, $699

Today Razer has announced its new Android device: the aptly named Razer Phone. It has the world's first 120Hz "Ultramotion" display, the first use of Qualcomm's QuickCharge 4+, and a great set of specs like 8GB of RAM, 64GB of storage (further expandable via microSD), and a 4,000 mAh battery. It will cost $699 and pre-orders will be live as soon as today, with general availability for North America and Europe on November 17th.

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Razer Phone leaks with monstrous specs including 120Hz display, 4000mAh battery, dual cameras, and more

Razer obviously isn't known for its smartphones. But with the company's recent acquisition of Nextbit, many of us have been eagerly awaiting a potential Razer smartphone of sorts. Just two weeks ago, a picture of the alleged Razer device leaked showing off its dual cameras. Now, a mobile carrier in the UK has leaked a product page for the Razer Phone, and potato photo aside, it's mighty interesting.

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Alleged image of upcoming Razer smartphone leaked

All the way back in January, Razer acquired smartphone startup Nextbit for an undisclosed amount. Nextbit's only product to date was the Robin, so the natural assumption was that Razer wanted to get into the smartphone business. The company is expected to announce something big on November 1, and a new leak seems to confirm that a smartphone will be revealed.

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Razer has shut down the Nextbit community site [Update]

It's hard for a startup to get into the competitive world of smartphones, but Nextbit made a go of things for a while. The Robin was a good phone, but the company was acquired by Razer early this year. Nothing much has changed since then, but now the Nextbit community site has been taken offline. It simply redirects to the Razer home page.

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Almost A Year Later, Razer's Turret Wireless Keyboard And Mouse Combo Is Finally Available For A Whopping $160

It wouldn't be fair to call the Razer Forge TV a failure. No, that simply wouldn't be right. If I did that, I'd miss the opportunity to call it a half-baked, poorly-supported product that lags behind even the limited field of Android TV devices like a three-legged dog chasing a nitrous-powered mail truck. Almost a year after its US launch the set-top box is still inexplicably incompatible with Netflix, the promised PC game streaming software feature has disappeared, and even after being injected with the decrepit soul of OUYA the Forge is basically a dead platform. But there's one last thing to report on before we can finally lay it to rest: the Turret.

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OUYA Owners Get A $50 Discount On Razer's Forge TV Controller Bundle, Plus $10 Cortex Store Credit

The dream of OUYA was not to be. It turns out that overturning a decades-old industry by disrupting it with mobile hardware and open-source software is a tough row to hoe, and adding on a semi-exclusive game market (you know, that thing that consoles do that's already universally hated) wasn't the best opening move. So OUYA floundered in the maturing set-top box market until Razer snapped it up in the hopes of bolstering its own Forge TV, which had been on the market for months and was already known as the worst option in an extremely limited field.

Huh. Maybe they just wanted some company to commiserate with. 

In any case, the customers who bought and paid for OUYA hardware are getting a couple of dividends out of the deal.

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Razer Resurrects The OUYA Store as 'Cortex' On The Forge TV [Update]

The saga of OUYA is a cautionary tale of how hard it is to build a new gaming platform. After an initial crowdfunding success, OUYA had trouble attracting developers and keeping gamers interested. The company was gobbled up by gaming giant Razer earlier this year, and now the OUYA store is back as Cortex for the Android TV-powered Forge TV.

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Razer's Forge TV Set-Top Box Makes An Ignominious Exit From The Google Store

Razer never seemed to really get behind its Android TV device. As far as we can tell, review units for the Forge TV were never sent to any of the tech media (not that we're bitter or anything. Razer. Not at all), and after brutal user reviews were splattered all over the Internet, the device still doesn't support the Android TV version of Netflix. Razer never released the neat-o mouse-and-keyboard combo designed specifically for couch gaming, the company's alternative to NVIDIA's PC game streaming software still hasn't materialized, and there have been no mentions of software updates or even notable game releases since the Forge TV launched in April.

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[Weekend Poll & Discussion] Is Android TV Yet Another Living Room Flop For Google? Do You Have One?

When Android TV launched, it did so to an attitude that, at best, could be described as lukewarm. Google has attempted to corner the living room for years now, and its most successful attempt  - the Chromecast - has essentially undercut Google's own more ambitious TV products.

Google TV never really had a chance - it was slow, the hardware was never particularly powerful, and the remotes were a nightmare. Google eventually let GTV die by slowly letting it fade into uselessness piece by piece.

Chromecast actually launched before Google TV was really "dead" in any official sense, and its success was immediate.

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