The AYA Neo is a handheld gaming computer featuring a 7 inch touchscreen display, built-in game controllers, and a design that resembles a Nintendo Switch. But under the hood are the guts of a PC and the ability to play many Windows PC games.
When the AYA Neo first went up for pre-order through an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign, only one processor option was available: an AMD Ryzen 5 4500U chip. Now an upgraded version with a Ryzen 7 4800U processor has been announced. It’s called the AYA Neo Pro, and it’s expected to ship in September.
The upgrade means that instead of a 6-core, 6-thread processor with Radeon Vega 6 graphics, the Pro model will have an 8-core, 16-thread chip with Radeon Vega 8 graphics.
Incidentally, the Ryzen 7 4800U is also processor that GPD is using for the AMD-powered version of the GPD Win Max 2021 handheld gaming computer, which has an 8 inch display, game controllers, and a physical keyboard.
AYA plans to continue selling the original Neo along with the new Neo Pro. There’s also a Neo Pro “Retro Power” bundle that comes with retro-inspired color scheme, plus retro-inspired accessories including a 108W USB-C fast charging adapter and a custom portable docking station and mechanical keyboard (which, I believe, may be sold separately).
Here are the expected prices for all three variations moving forward:
|AYA Neo||AYA Neo Pro||AYA Neo Pro Retro Power|
|Processor||Ryzen 5 4500U||Ryzen 7 4800U||Ryzen 7 4800U|
|Storage / price||512GB / $925|
1TB / $1015
|1TB / $1215|
2TB / TBA
|1TB / $1315|
2TB / TBA
Folks who have already pre-ordered a standard AYA Neo from Indiegogo, but who have not yet had their order ship, can upgrade to a Pro model for $$200 to $300, depending on the version they’ve already paid for. Upgrades to the Retro Power range from $250 to $400.
You can find more details in the August 8th update on the AYA Neo crowdfunding page.
Or if you haven’t yet ordered a handheld gaming PC, you can check out our comparison of the AYA Neo, ONEXPLAYER, GPD Win 3 and Win Max 2021, and Valve’s Steam Deck to help make your choice.
Everyone is being so negative in the comments but I think the aya neo was actually an incredible device that set out to do something very cool on a somewhat niche area.
They were just very unfortunate to enter the scene shortly before the colossos Valve also joining the party. Ideally there was enough cake for everyone, but Valve will just eat it all because it has massive resources at it’s disposal (from the get go, Valve is using a custom soc, everyone else barely has enough cash to design a product with off the shelf parts; valve has been preparing the software for years, everyone else has to contend with windows and it’s quircks).
It’s a really unbalanced fight, I hope aya, gpd etc. are able to continue or die with grace because, even thought they started it all, they never stood a chance against Valve
Valve has set the price precedent now; these devices should not exceed $650.
Then again, maybe their business model is only aimed at the niche market, where they make a new product every year, and only aim to sell around 7-10k units per year?
The problem with that is that Valve can afford to sell at or below cost (I suspect even the $649 is a bit below cost, at least initially) and make the money back, and then some, in the Steam store, while these projects have to make their profit on the hardware itself. Without a large market they can scale up to, they are probably already close to as low as they can afford to go and still make any money at all.
Ignoring the Steam Deck’s influence on AYA NEO’s long term prospects, the 4800U upgrade will probably provide not very noticeable gains outside of benchmarks and staring at the FPS counter.
Doesn’t seem worth the extra cost on top of the already high price tag.
With the Steam Deck arriving in the next 6 months, am not optimistic about the future of Aya Neo.
I just read in their Indiegogo comments how backers are frustrated about them making aesthetic changes (color changes) without backer consent to the design. I honestly get the feeling that they are scrambling to try to make themselves stand out with these sudden changes that make absolutely no sense. The only way they could stand a chance is perhaps if they made a last ditch effort of cozying up to and partnering with one of the big name Taiwanese companies (e.g. Asus, MSI, and Gigabyte) that Russell mentioned who likely want to get on the Steam Deck bandwagon. Thing is, I honestly don’t see those companies wanting to reach out to a small time operation like Aya when their own engineering staff are far better equipped and skilled to go it alone without some outside entity getting in the middle of their operations. So I really don’t see Aya with many options to turn to other than throwing in the towel and riding out into the sunset as the day fades on the bygone era of the super niche Chinese handheld gaming PC.
I think the best direction for these Chinese handheld PC makers (GPD, Aya, etc) is to get into lower cost ARM handheld systems.
GPD got their start with ARM powered Android gaming handhelds.
That makes zero sense. Low cost ARM handheld market is already oversaturated, that is why GPD abandoned it.
GPD is working on a GPD XP device which is ARM based with an Android OS. There were some teasers about it.
Although, like you said (at least in China) ARM gaming handhelds are plentiful (plus often don’t get OS updates post-release). I’m guessing Grant is only focusing on his own local market (seems so based on his other comments too) and not GPD’s native one.
Agreed. Dead on Arrival.
DOA. An insufferably high price of $1215, a one-and-a-half-year-old last generation processor, and exorbitant shipping for slow boated, sketchy warranty support destroyed all hope of them surviving the entry of Valve’s Steam Deck. Aya, GPD, One, will all fall as casualties and I bet that Dell, Lenovo, and HP are all gearing up to take up Gaben’s offer for other PC makers to join the handheld PC gaming revolution and take advantage of their economies of scale to sell higher quality, better priced, better warrantied devices than that lot ever did.
Agreed. The gig is over for GPD and friends.
If we see any uptake on Valve’s offer to let PC OEMs make their own Steam Decks, my guess is that we’ll see it first mostly from Taiwanese brands like Asus, MSI, and Gigabyte. They have the flexibility and willingness to design and release products quickly. American brands will still be in focus groups before Taiwan has a product sent to market.
If we see any big laptop brands doing this, it will likely be Dell through their Alienware brand.
It will certainly be interesting to see what variations we’ll see from other OEMs. If someone can make something like the Steam Deck, but with a user-accessible M.2 slot, and a Type-C port on the bottom, I will definitely buy one.
I guess GPD, One Netbook and AYA NEO could focus on their local market and other regions not officially served by Valve (or other OEMs that decide to enter the handheld space). PC gaming in China is a very large market. Plus, foreign companies may have a hard time entering it.
I guess they need more power if they want to ask $1000 for a product that needs to compete with a $399 product (Steam Deck).
I’m curious how much more performance it will have over the Steam Deck. Something tells me that it won’t be enough to explain the price gap…. and the warranty gap…. and the fact that I need to buy the Aya from a crowdfunding platform, rather than a trusted traditional vendor (you’ll never succeed in claiming fraud on your credit card if you buy from Indiegogo and get nothing).
As far as performance goes, for games (GPU intensive tasks) it will be doing well to come close to matching the Steam Deck, and for other uses (CPU intensive tasks) it will perform better, but neither device is really geared for other uses besides gaming.
It’s going to be basically impossible for any of these devices to really compete with the Steam Deck. Most likely the best they can hope for is unique enough capabilities or accessibility to make the products worth a boutique product price. With how open the Steam Deck appears to be aiming for, that’s probably going to be a tall order. These devices might have better Windows support, but that’s likely to make more of a difference for devices with a physical keyboard, like the GPD Win Max 2021.
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