Xiaomi seems to be getting serious about gaming as a segment. The Chinese company launched its first gaming laptop with Intel Core i7 processor and NVIDIA GTX 1060 GPU last week. Now, it is preparing to launch a smartphone aimed at gamers.
Xiaomi has been rumored to be working on a gamer-centric smartphone codenamed ‘Black Shark’ for the past few months that will compete against the likes of Razer Phone. The Chinese company has now sent out invites for an event in Beijing on April 13, where it will launch the new smartphone. The invite suggests that smartphone will be made by Black Shark, a company backed by Xiaomi, and might not feature the Mi branding. The smartphone could be part of an effort to ditch the Chinese branding, and focus on global markets like Europe and the United States.
The invite comes with a Black Shark logo and Qualcomm branding, which confirms the device will be powered by the latest Snapdragon 845 chipset. It is expected to launch with option for either 6GB or 8GB of RAM, and 64GB or 256GB of internal storage. It is not clear how the smartphone will differ from other Snapdragon 845 powered smartphones, but Black Shark might include a 120Hz display like the Razer Phone since the faster refresh rate allows for smoother gaming experience.
Razer Phone, launched in November last year, is the only smartphone aimed squarely at gamers. At the same time though, it has been proven to be a decent regular device as well. Any flagship smartphone with flagship SoC like the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 or last year’s Snapdragon 835 can handle all the game titles available on the Google Play Store. There is no proven advantage of a gamer-centric smartphone yet, but the launch of games like PUBG Mobile and Fortnite (iOS only for now) shows that gaming can soon be a big selling point.
At the launch of Snapdragon 845 in December last year, Qualcomm demonstrated how its flagship mobile platform is optimized to work well with demanding game title like the Lineage 2. With gaming franchises porting their console and PC games to mobile platforms, gaming could be a major differentiator in the mobile industry.
Watch: Xiaomi Mi MIX 2S First Look
There are few things certain about the Black Shark smartphone launching on April 13. First, it will definitely bring the newest hardware features, and second, it will be cheaper than most other smartphones including the Razer Phone. So hold on, if you are planning to buy a smartphone for gaming, this one could well be the best yet.