Lenovo is broadening its PC gaming expertise by partnering with gaming hardware and software maker Razer.
The two vendors were at the DreamHack Winter Fest in Sweden last week showing off a prototype of the new Lenovo Razer Edition gaming desktop, and officials said the system will officially launch in January at the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. The partnership calls for Lenovo and Razer to co-brand and co-market special Razer editions of Lenovo's new Y series gaming systems, a move that officials with both companies said will combine Lenovo's strong manufacturing, supply chain and channel with the immersive technology and gaming expertise of Razer.
"While we bring to the table our engineering expertise, design muscle and scale, Razer adds in the finesse and experience of serving the gaming community for the last decade," Victor Rios, vice president and general manager of the workstation business unit within Lenovo's Gaming and Industry Solutions group, said in a statement. "We believe our partnership is a strong first step that will lead to the delivery of winning PC gaming solutions and a brand new experience to our customers."
Gaming is a lucrative and stable segment of a struggling global PC market that has seen overall shipments decline over the past several years, due in large part to the rapid growth in popularity of such mobile devices as smartphones and tablets. Gamers tend to buy new PCs every two to three years—compared with six years on average by everyday PC users—and the gaming segment is where such technologies as 4K video first appear before making their way into mainstream systems, according to Intel executives, who in September talked about the chip maker's efforts in the gaming industry. More than $34 billion will be spent on PC games this year, they said.
That makes gaming attractive to PC and component vendors, including Lenovo, the world's largest PC maker. The company in September unveiled the first of its Y Series gaming systems and now offers the Y700 and Y900 gaming desktops, and Y700, Y40-80 and Y50 gaming notebooks. The company also offers various accessories—including gaming headsets, keyboards and mouse—as part of its portfolio. In addition, also last week, Lenovo officials announced they are working with game company Dark Rift and a range of "gaming influencers" to create an indie game, with development running through February 2016.
The prototype of the new Razer Edition shows the traditional Y Series logo lit up in glowing Razer green and with other Razer elements like "Chroma" lighting at the bottom of the system.
In their statement, officials with Lenovo and Razer said that the new Razer Edition gaming desktops will employ Razer's "immersive technology," though they didn't elaborate. Razer offers a range of products like its Razer Surround audio and Razer Comms group chat software.
The companies also noted that the partnership will push the development of new technologies as well as new designs and products. They also will consider cross-selling capabilities in the future.
Razer co-founder and CEO Min-Liang Tan, noting the high positions Lenovo and his company occupy in the PC and gaming segments, said in a statement that "this agreement opens opportunities to advance the gaming lifestyle through world-class product in unprecedented ways."