Ever since the Nintendo Switch made portable consoles great again, there are clones coming from everywhere. Some of them manifest as ROG Phones with Kunai controllers, while others are full fledged PCs with controllers attached. GPD is one of the big names in this segment, with the GPD WIN 3 gaming handheld PC being a landmark in the field.
What GPD tried to do here was cram as much technology as possible in a compact shell, that mimics the already successful Nintendo Switch format. GPD WIN 3 is the subject of a crowdfunding campaign and it’s also inspired by the Sony VAIO from more than a decade ago, plus the slider UMPCs of loooong ago. It does bring some seriously hardcore specs, overkill specs even. I’m talking about an Intel Core Gen 11 CPU, 16 GB of RAM at 4266 MHz and 1 TB of M.2 SSD storage.
The graphics department does feel a bit neglected, since we only get Intel Iris Xe graphics. The usual gaming buttons and joysticks are here, flanking the touchscreen and there’s even a touch keyboard hiding behind a sliding screen. There’s a demo for Red Dead Redemption 2 below and it looks a bit underwhelming on the small screen, but the stable frame rate is an achievement I’d say. The screen is a mere 5.5 inch panel with a modest 1280 x 720 pixel resolution. The keyboard doesn’t provide tactile feedback like physical keys do, but it’s useful for quit input and chat in games. We recommend you check out the best budget keyboards for gaming if you don’t like their built-in keyboard.
The lowest price for this gizmo is $799 for the Core i5 option and $50 buys you a dock that converts the device into a desktop basically, if you attach a monitor, keyboard and mouse. There’s also a $949 version, one of the best sold so far on the crowdfunding platform. The screen kind of makes me hesitate and I’d rather get an iPad with Apple Arcade to be honest. This project has already hit 7400% of its goal on Indiegogo, so it’s definitely happening.