Qualcomm's Nintendo Switch-like Android gaming console allegedly in the works
Qualcomm appears to be working on a Nintendo Switch-like gaming console, according to information from Android Police and XDA Developers' Mishaal Rahman.
The current version strongly resembles the Switch, with detachable Joy-Con-like controllers on both sides of a 6.65-inches screen. Qualcomm's gaming console will likely run Android 12 but it is not expected to have telephony capabilities.
Other alleged features include a 6000mAh battery with Quick Charge technology, external display support, Bluetooth, GPS, dual-zone haptics, and an SD card slot. The device may also feature a fan. The screen is Full HD+ and the device does not have cameras.
It's not exactly clear if this is just a reference device for other manufacturers or a console that the company actually plans to release.
Per Android Police's sources, Qualcomm is aiming for a Q1 2022 launch and could price it around $300. Rahmaan believes that the price is too low for a device powered by a flagship Snapdragon chip. The current prototype apparently has the Snapdragon 888 under the hood.
Qualcomm's gaming console will likely be faster and more power-efficient than Snapdragon-888 powered gaming handsets, thanks to the alleged thicker dimensions that will give it extra thermal headroom.
The current iteration supposedly packs the X55 modem, which means the device will be 5G-ready.
Rahman also notes that device has the model number GRD8350P, and GRD may be short for Game Reference Device.
In October last year, a report said that Qualcomm has teamed up with Asus to release a gaming smartphone towards the end of 2020, but that did not come to pass.
In short, Qualcomm's plans seem unclear, but the chipmaker could very well be planning to enter the video game industry, given its tremendous growth during the pandemic, which is expected to outlast the virus.
A high-end control maker is apparently making gamepads for the device, which is a further indication that Qualcomm is considering a commercial release. The company might also build a content portal for the device.
The company has also started outlining distribution strategies for the Switch-like device.