Chinese mobile technology and entertainment company Snail Games recently demoed their OBox (Online Box) Android-based home console at E3, which they also revealed at CES earlier in the year.
The OBox is, unlike other Android consoles, designed to allow users to be able to download and play games rather than stream them to their homes. It outputs games at 4k and has some peripheral called the “air mouse” built into its standard controller. The hardware also shares similarities with some of the upcoming Steam Machines, as it is designed to be upgradable by users such as expanding storage or changing processors in tandem with the development of graphics. Sounds exciting, if it can all come together in time.
Snail Games’ Peter Kang recently had an interview with Polygon, where he explained that they do want to have full-blown games on their console as well as the mobile or tablet games directly built for portable tech. Despite being relatively unknown Western markets, Kang was adamant Snail was in talks with multiple developers and publishers with the hopes of getting games lined up in time for the release and beyond. Despite demoing Modern Combat (an entry into Gameloft’s mobile FPS heavyweight), Snail want to cater to hardcore gamers. The studio is also hoping to push devs at home on mobile technology into creating Android games that will feel comfortable at home on the big screen rather than five inches in your hand on a train. It’s also important to note that the OBox will come with its own online store but will have plenty of games available outside of it.
Naturally, OBox is set to release in China first in an effort to stake its claim amongst the multiple consoles available over there in what Kang termed a “super fragmented” market. This would then hope to demonstrate the demand for their console, and thus generate hype surrounding what they’re forecasting as a first half of 2016 release for the console. Snail have not yet released a price for the OBox as of yet, but you can expect at least estimates once the console sees store shelves very soon.