Corsair is hoping to stand out in the enthusiast keyboard space by buying one of its more recognizable brands. The company is acquiring Drop (formerly Massdrop), best known for its customizable mechanical keyboards and key switches. The move will let Corsair "significantly grow" Drop's community-centric keyboard line while creating new products for its in-house brands, including Elgato.
Drop will stay a separate brand inside of Corsair, and it will handle all existing purchases and support. Corsair isn't revealing the financial terms of the deal. In a message to users, Drop's CEO stressed that his firm would still collaborate with "community favorites," but would have a much better time of serving customers outside the US.
The strategy isn't surprising. Gamers and other hobbyists have increasingly delved into custom keyboards with personalized key caps, lighting and switches. You can get a unique keyboard that matches the look of your computer setup while delivering the typing feel you prefer. The Drop purchase gives Corsair a quick way to expand its presence in that market, sparing it the trouble of building up its own resources — or facing Drop as a competitor.
There's fierce rivalry in the category. In addition to Drop, established companies like Keychron, KBDFans and Mode have customizable options. That's not including stock keyboards that offer similar functionality, just without the flexibility. Corsair isn't certain to dominate, but this may help it thrive in a field where tech heavyweights like ASUS and NZXT are increasingly involved.
This could also help Corsair bring personalization to segments where it's still rare. Game streamers and other creators thrive on elaborate setups, but their broadcasting equipment (such as control decks and microphones) rarely offer much in the way of customization. While it's not clear just what Elgato will release, it could claim an edge over challengers.