Embracing the Next Wave: The Strategic Wait for New-Age Handhelds

Something many haven’t considered: right now is a great time to not buy a handheld gaming PC. The explosion of handheld gaming PCs was ushered in by the Steam Deck, and Computex 2024 brought a bunch of new handhelds from both giants and newcomers in the tech industry. So, why is the tech industry releasing such a surge of handhelds right now? Why is this the absolute worst time to buy a handheld gaming PC? As I’m writing this, it just so happens that we’re on the precipice of next-gen mobile chips from AMD and Intel to modernise gaming considerably. Here’s why you should wait before buying that handheld.

The Heart of the Handheld: Chip Revolution on the Horizon

The Big Chip Leap

At the heart of this technological tipping point is the anticipated transformation in chip technology: both AMD and Intel have gone all-in with the next generation of processors. The AMD Ryzen AI 300 and the Intel Lunar Lake generation will shift LAPTOPS – including the handheld gaming PC – into a new realm of power efficiency and graphical strength.

Graphical Goliaths: AMD and Intel's Next Moves

So, with AMD building the RDNA 3.5 architecture into their chips, and Intel integrating the blisteringly fast Battlemage architecture, we’re looking at around 40-50 per cent boosts to graphical performance. Not just numbers – rather, this promises a leap to the right, where handhelds finally become a vehicle for not just playing demanding titles at 1080p and 60fps; a vehicle that opens the door to the battery life we’re told is the limit right now.

Power Efficiency: The Game Changer

The Efficiency Edge

What makes them doubly exciting is that they are also built around efficiency. Benchmarks showing AMD’s battery-saving potential and Intel’s radical low-power architecture both suggest the possibility of a future where the best handheld gaming PCs are truly untethered from the nearest wall socket. A combination of performance and power efficiency could redefine what we expect in a handheld gaming PC.

Why Patience Pays Off

Timing the Tech Tides

For all the siren song of shiny new handhelds like the ROG Ally X and the like, offering incremental enhancements, patience could yield a much larger bounty. The chip revolution is coming to the tech world, and the next generation of handhelds will not only run on the next range of chips, they’re likely to deliver boons to battery life, graphics and perhaps even price.

Software Synergies

And, of course, the software side of the equation adds depth and quality to the experience as well. We saw that with the Steam Deck OLED and other predecessors: changes in the software can improve the functionality and fun of the device. If you wait for the next-gen handhelds, these incremental improvements are baked in from the start.

The Future in Hand: Preparing for Next-Gen Handhelds

As the next-gen chips, sharper battery life and software nuance-building ahead of the next onslaught of handheld gaming PC promise to bring more of a change to how we expect to play on the go than just a boost in quality on existing screens, this moment feels like it could be a watershed for anyone considering buying into the rest of the line.

Understanding Laptops: The Backbone of Handheld Gaming PCs

We might have had tablets and portable video games, but LAPTOPS remained the foundation of on-the-go computing, evolving from clunky bricks to diminutive beasts over the course of years, until they could combine performance, efficiency and portability like never before. Now laptop-class processors are migrating to the hands of tomorrow’s handheld gaming PCs, carrying desktop-class performance right into your grip. Processors from AMD and Intel that were designed to push laptop performance into uncharted territory will bring a quantum leap in handheld gaming, too. Even after all this time, how LAPTOPS have evolved and where technology will take us next shows that good things can come in handheld packages, thanks to what developed inside LAPTOPS. We’re on the cusp of a new renaissance in handheld gaming where it all comes together into a small package. For more of our take on handheld gaming, check out our sister site, handheldgamingblog.com.

Jun 09, 2024
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