Ayaneo is ditching Windows for its next handheld PC

Ayaneo Next Lite
Pictured: Ayaneo Next Lite
// To know your enemy, you must become your enemy.
Fergus Halliday
Jan 12, 2024
Icon Time To Read2 min read

Published on January 11, 2024

Ayaneo is taking its fight against the Steam Deck to a whole new operating system, with the newly announced Ayaneo Next Lite opting for SteamOS over Windows 11.

Previous Ayaneo devices have run on Windows, so it’s a pretty significant break from what the company has done in the past. It’s also a detail that sets this next effort apart from even newcomers to the niche like the MSI Claw.

As the handheld gaming PC has expanded in recent years, it’s become increasingly clear just how much value the end-to-end experience that Valve is able to offer with the Steam Deck adds to the overall user experience. While Windows 11 adds a lot of versatility to this type of device, it also comes with a few of its own complications. The situation is enough of an issue for Microsoft to get involved, so maybe it's actually more surprising that it's taken this long for something to try this approach instead.

While Ayaneo itself is just teasing the Next Lite for now and hasn’t announced the key specs for the device, it has confirmed a few details. Specifically, the unit will feature a 7-inch 800p display, Hall joysticks, ergonomic handles and a 47Whr battery.

Given that the performance of past Ayaneo hardware has always been generally good and the software has been something of an Achilles heel for the brand, it’ll be interesting to see if this new approach yields better results. At the end of the day, the idea of a cheaper Steam Deck is almost just as compelling as the idea of an alternative to Valve's handheld PC.

There is one wrinkle here though. Bizarrely, the official blog post by Ayaneo about the device notes that “subscriptions” for it will open on January 11 2024. It’s unclear if this is some sort of translation error or whether the company are moving to a new business model from the crowdfunding-centric one that they’ve relied on to date. Stay tuned.

Update: Ayaneo has clarified that the Next Lite will run an unofficial port of SteamOS called HoloISO rather than the official one that powers Valve's handheld. It's also clarified that the device will not not cost a subscription.

Rev Streaming
We waste our time, so you don’t waste yours
There’s too much good TV and not enough time. We take the guesswork out with our weekly picks for what to watch.

You can’t watch it all, so we watch it for you.

By signing up, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Disclosure: Reviews.org Australia and Safewise Australia's coverage of CES 2024 is supported by Samsung, MSI and Reolink

Fergus Halliday
Written by
Fergus Halliday
Fergus Halliday is a journalist and editor for Reviews.org. He’s written about technology, telecommunications, gaming and more for over a decade. He got his start writing in high school and began his full-time career as the Editor of PC World Australia. Fergus has made the MCV 30 Under 30 list, been a finalist for seven categories at the IT Journalism Awards and won Most Controversial Writer at the 2022 Consensus Awards. He has been published in Gizmodo, Kotaku, GamesHub, Press Start, Screen Rant, Superjump, Nestegg and more.

Related Articles

Kogan Internet NBN Review
Kogan Internet: Plans and prices
Kogan wants to connect you to the internet.
Man looking at smartphone
Coles Mobile: Plans and prices
How does Australia's second supermarket telco rate?
Smartphones in a crowd with flashlights on
Numobile: Plans and prices
Need a new mobile plan? Try Numobile.