Gaming

GPD's new handheld console revives Sony's most daring design

The handheld company is bringing the slider candybar back from the dead, and it's coming soon.

GPD announces bangin' new handheld

GPD, a Chinese company that's been releasing handheld game consoles since 2016, has announced its latest offering: The GPD Win 3. Unlike GPD's previous x86-based handhelds, the Win 3 eschews a clamshell design for something akin to an old-school candybar slider.

Look familiar?

If GPD's Win 3 design looks familiar, it's probably because you're old enough to remember Sony's foray into (at the time, at least) ultra-portable PC handhelds called UMPCs. These things had an MSRP of around $2,000, so at the time they were basically the pinnacle of mobile technology.

King of the niche

Never seen one of these handhelds before? They're essentially the gold standard in handheld emulation because of their beefy x86 processors and the prolific library of emulators that run on Windows.

Big performance, tiny package

Here's what the GPD Win 3 is rocking:

- Intel Tiger Lake CPU (there are Core i5 and i7 models)

- Intel Xe GPU

- 16GB of LPDDR4x RAM

- 1TB PCIe SSD

- Thunderbolt 4

- Backlit keyboard

- A 5.5-inch 720p display

What can it do?

You might not know it, but Intel has seriously stepped up its integrated GPU game with the Xe series. These GPUs won't replace your $900 Nvidia GPU anytime soon, but Intel's Xe can play some of the latest games at low resolutions and respectable framerates.

It would be wise to wait for a full review before getting too excited, but GPD has uploaded some performance videos showing the Win 3 playing modern games like Death Stranding and emulating PS3 games.

GPD's Win 3 playing Death Stranding.GPD's YouTube channel.
GPD's Win 3 emulating God of War III , a PS3 game.GPD's YouTube channel.

$799

The starting price for the i5 model of the Win 3.

When can you get this?

GPD has been teasing the Win 3 on its Twitter account since the beginning of December, but now we finally have some firmer prices, specs, and the company's Indiegogo page, where the device will initially be offered. No firm shipping dates have been confirmed, but naturally we're looking at a release date in 2021.