ESPORTS DISCOVERY

Ayaneo’s new handheld gaming PC looks like a souped-up Nintendo DS

In the world of handheld PCs, some companies are aiming at bigger and more powerful devices, while others are doing the opposite, going for portability and ease of use. The Ayaneo Flip is more like the latter: a tiny PC you could stuff in your back pocket. You know, in case you wanted to relive your old Nintendo DS glory days.

The first thing you notice about the Flip is its compact clamshell design, which, when opened, reveals face buttons, a d-pad, dual thumbsticks, and, of course, a mini keyboard for thumb typing. 

Since it will be a Windows 11 machine, this will make navigating the OS a lot easier than using an on-screen keyboard and chatting with friends online. Though if you ever used a Blackberry or one of those Xbox 360 chat pads, teeny keyboards take a lot of getting used to, especially if you have big fingers. 

According to Ayaneo’s Discord channel, the Flip will feature a seven-inch display with a 120Hz refresh rate. However, it’s tough to tell whether or not the display is a touch screen. I did notice what looks like a tiny trackpad right of the unit’s hinge. We don’t know the exact specs of the handheld just yet, though it’ll likely be another Ryzen 7840U handheld PC like the rest of Ayaneo’s lineup.

Ayaneo CEO Arthur Zhang did share some extra performance details in the Discord about Flip in response to some questions. He said the Flip would have similar specs as another one of its upcoming handhelds, the Ayaneo Neo 2S, and even feature the same cooling technology. 

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Interestingly, this is not Ayaneo’s first handheld PC with a keyboard. The Ayaneo Slide was announced a few months ago and has a Nokia Sidekick-esque display that also hides a mini keyboard.

Recently, we got to check out the Lenovo Legion Go and its wild detachable controllers, which double as gaming mice that are due to launch soon. Two very different approaches to PC handhelds—but that choice is what PC gaming is all about.

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