Razer Unveils High End Gaming Tablet That Doubles as a Transformer

During CES 2012, Razer revealed the Fiona—an overpowered, surprisingly odd tablet that would work to slake the bloodthrist of gamers for a mobile device that could play video games with the best of them. Now at CES 2013, Razer has finally unleashed the design and its actually much better than the original expectations. Instead of a tablet with controller “wings” attached, it’s a transforming machine that can modularly take controllers, a keyboard, or just go on its own as a touchscreen pane.

The Project Fiona is the Razer Edge.

At CES we’ve seen a 10.1-inch device that can herald itself as potentially the world’s most powerful tablet packing a third-gen Intel Core processor, and a powerful nVidia GT640M LE GPU. It comes in two versions: the Edge and the Edge Pro. For those looking for detailed specs: an Intel Core i5 CPU, 4GB RAM, and a 64GB SSD for the Edge; and Intel Core i7 CPU, 8GB RAM, and the option for either a 128GB or 256GB SSD appears in its bigger sister the Edge Pro.

Both models will support USB 3.0, Bluetooth 4.0, and run a full version of Windows 8 in order to permit the most advanced gaming to date on a tablet.

The real fun begins when the form factor of the tablet is taken into account. Looking at Project Fiona we saw a device with “wings” that were side controllers that would enable using the tablet in a gaming fashion—eschewing the use of just touch. Aside from that the tablet can also dock with its own thin keyboard (in a similar fashion to the Surface) which can turn it into a sort of netbook/notebook factor. Finally it has the capability to dock and use a full sized monitor, keyboard, and mouse for those who want to have a desktop. And, of course, it turns into a standard tablet.

Most on-the-go gamers will be wondering about the battery life—which is quoted at about one hour—can be doubled when docked with a 40Whr battery. With only one hour of battery life, it might not be winning any awards for playing Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 on the train or bus; but it might be good enough to get gamers through a short trip between plugs should they need to go off the socket for a moment or two.

The Razer Edge gaming tablet is expected to be priced around $999 and start shipping in the first quarter of 2013—the accessories for the “transformation” will be on sale separately.

About Kyt Dotson

Technology and civilization walk hand in hand and civilization is nothing without the skin of society, brushing up against itself, speaking strange nothings across dimly lit avenues and computer screens. If we're going to understand ourselves in this digital era, it will be through watching the adoption of technology by people to express themselves as people. I am an anthropologist and an author of science fiction and fantasy--and with my technology, I hope to open up new and exciting worlds that will not just enlighten the humanity of my friends and fans but also educate and enhance the expression of their own personhood. Find more of my work on Google+; send tips to @kytsune.