ASUS is making its own handheld gaming PC


ASUS has its hands in just about every segment of gaming hardware you can think of, and that now includes the handheld gaming PC market with the ROG Ally.

This is basically ASUS’s competitor to the Steam Deck that Valve launched last year. Officially ASUS teased and unveiled the device on March 31. Interestingly enough, even with the timing, ASUS was adamant that this announcement was not a joke. The ASUS ROG Ally was real, and the company says it would share more soon. ASUS has made another announcement about the device on the morning of April 3 telling gamers to stay tuned. It’s even got a Best Buy link up where you can sign up to learn more about the device.

Officially ASUS hasn’t said much about the Ally’s specs. But it has shared some information with YouTube content creator Dave Lee, who got to spend some time with a very early engineering sample. And according to Lee, the device is impressive.

ASUS says the ROG Ally has double the performance of the Steam Deck

For those of you that have tried the Steam Deck, you know how good it feels to play games on it. And for those that haven’t tried it, it handles games surprisingly well. But the Steam Deck is limited by its hardware. Often requiring a little bit of fine-tuning to get steady frame rates of 50 – 60 frames per second. Which usually includes running the game at lower graphics settings.


ASUS says the Ally has double the performance of the Steam Deck. Although it wouldn’t share specifics right now. RAM, storage, exact APU model and clock rate are all unclear right now. However, Lee does mention some key details. The Ally is running with a brand-new custom APU from AMD. It’s a 4nm chip, based on the Zen 4 RDNA3 architecture. It also has the capability to consistently hit those higher frame rates with higher graphics settings. And, some will be happy to know that the fans are apparently noticeably quieter than the ones on the Steam Deck.

As for the display, the Ally sports a 7-inch panel with not only 1080p resolution, but it supports up to 120 frames per second. Both of which are strong improvements over what the Steam Deck offers.

It runs on Windows 11

For the operating system ASUS cleverly went with Windows 11 here. Which means you’ll have access to all of your games no matter the client. Steam, battlenet, Epic, Ubisoft Connect, you name it. But, since it’s Windows, at least in the engineering sample there’s not really any sort of super custom user interface like what you get with the Steam Deck. And that could be a turnoff for some users. The Steam Deck’s UI is notoriously easy to use and it’s just a very intuitive experience.

So ASUS will hopefully have something in the works for its production units. There’s also no current word on price point. ASUS wouldn’t share the actual price of the Ally, but does say that it’s “competitive pricing.” The question now then, is competitive with what? Because the Steam Deck isn’t the only handheld gaming PC out there. In fact there’s more than a few. And even though they’re all more powerful than the Steam Deck, they’re all super expensive as well. Whereas you can get a Steam Deck for $400.