If it seems like very day of the week Asus has a new netbook, nettop, multimedia computer, or other product to promote, you ain’t seen nothing. According to the New York Times, the company’s engineers have developed some cool products that have yet to see the light of day, and which may not anytime soon. That includes an eBook reader and a Wii-style video game console.
Honestly, I can’t say I’m too surprised to hear that Asus has a video game console in the works. The Eee Box line of low power nettops looks an awful lot like the Nintendo Wii. And Asus has already showed off a set of motion-sensing gaming joysticks that bear a striking resemblance to the Wii-mote. It’s not clear if these products would be the foundation of an Asus gaming console, or if the company has something else entirely up its sleeve. But according to Asus vice chairman Jonathon Tsang, the company claims its Wii-mote clones are more sensitive than Nintendo’s original product.
Overall, the New York Times article makes the case that Asus has been spending a lot of time and effort on engineering new products over the last few years, while distancing itself from its manufacturing subsidiary, Pegatron. The move has paid off to some degree. The Asus Eee PC 701 sparked the netbook revolution. And Asus was also one of the first companies to offer a netbook with an 8.9 inch screen. But in the last year, the company has lost its market leader status in the netbook industry to rival Acer, which now sells more netbooks than any other company. Sometimes it’s not innovation that helps win the race, but distribution channels, brand recognition, and the ability to repackage good ideas that other companies have come up with.