It’s not unusual for devices to come and go on Google‘s fancy new online hardware store but usually they happen when a product is being deprecated in lieu of a successor or is being discontinued altogether. So when Razer‘s first and so far only venture into a console-like living room gaming system suddenly disappears from Google Store without a word, there is a good measure of speculation happening. Of course, the Razer Forge TV is still available from other sources, but now no longer has Google’s official stamp of approval.
“The Razer Forge TV Gaming Bundle is no longer available for purchase.” That’s what will greet you if you try to look for the Forge TV on Google Store. Same thing with the Serval Gaming Controller, which could be used both for the Forge TV itself as well as any other Android smartphone. There has been no announcement, not even a leaked whisper, of an update or successor, so we can only suspect either Razer or Google slowly and silently pulling back from the device.
The Forge TV was one of the first third-party Android TV devices in the market, beating NVIDIA’s SHIELD by a few months. We got some alone time with the console bundle, which included a keyboard and a mouse, at CES early this year and walked away quite impressed. But after that initial hype and fanfare, the Forge TV has seemingly disappeared backstage, its silence only punctuated by delays in shipping. Meanwhile, its biggest rival in the space, the SHIELD, would continuously enjoy the spotlight, whether for good or for ill.
Razer’s console still hasn’t disappeared completely. You can still buy it from Razer itself, as well as retailers like Amazon. Those, however, could just be remnants, a foreshadowing of an eventual discontinuation. If that’s the case, which we hope isn’t, it could indirectly affect another one of Razer’s newest “products”. Last June, Razer acquired gaming startup OUYA, which practically meant that the OUYA hardware and platform would be discontinued in favor of Razer’s. But if Razer’s lone Android TV device goes away, game developers who still have ties with OUYA might once again find themselves without a home.