Razer's Android TV box targets gamers with PC streaming

Razer has joined other recent comers in the Android TV arena with Forge TV, but unlike the others, its box is aimed squarely at gamers, not cord-cutters. As such, it's suitably powerful with a quad-core Snapdragon 805 CPU, Adreno 420 GPU, 802.11ac WiFi, Bluetooth 4.1, 2GB RAM and 16GB of storage. Yes, that'll let it handle garden-variety Google Play games for up to four players and beam them onto a big-screen TV. But the Forge TV's main powers have little to do with weak-sauce Android gaming, and more to do with Razer Bluetooth peripherals and the piece de resistance called "Cortex: Stream." That tech uses WiFi to give you low-latency streaming from a source far more suitable to gaming than a dinky Android box -- namely, your PC.

Razer says its Cortex: Stream tech dodges the laggy PC streaming of other systems and works at up to 1080p resolution with a WiFi or Ethernet connection. It'll also work with other Android TV devices for a $40 subscription fee and supports any DirectX 9 or higher game. To further aid gameplay, Razer also revealed two optional Bluetooth accessories: the Serval gaming controller and the Razer Turret gaming mouse and lapboard. The controller can play any Android TV or smartphone game (using the phone clip), and memorize up to four device pairings.

Oh yeah, and Forge TV also works as an Android TV entertainment center. It'll power apps like Netflix, Hulu and Spotify, giving you remote control via an Android or iOS device. It also supports Google Cast in case you want to broadcast shows through a Chromecast dongle, and you can save shows and gaming progress via a cloud save feature. What price for this gaming power? The Forge TV box alone is $100, or $150 bundled with the Serval controller (we've reached out for pricing for the Turret gaming mouse). Availability is targeted for Q1 2015.