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(Pocket-lint) - A lot of hope was placed on the shoulders of the humble Android console a couple of years back, with Ouya perhaps the biggest name is trying to offer a cheaper alternative to dedicated games machines from Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo. However, they seemed to be a flash in the pan and failed to take off.

Amazon has added Android-based gaming to its Fire TV set-top-box and Google's Nexus Player connects to a gamepad too, but they are video and entertainment streaming devices primarily and gaming is a smaller part of their make up.


Gaming company Razer thinks there's still legs in the idea though. And considering its plans for the Forge TV microconsole launched at CES 2015 in Las Vegas, it could be onto something.

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Not only is it a very credible Android entertainment centre and gaming device, with a quad-core 2.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 processor, Adreno 420 graphics and 2GB of RAM, it will soon be enhanced by Razer Cortex: Stream, the company's own PC streaming software that enables devices to play games running on a PC remotely, with little or no lag.

It is effectively Razer's own version of Nvidia GameStream, which Shield and Shield Tablet owners will know a lot about. However, adding the option to a tiny set-top-box for the living room means that triple-A PC games will be able to be played on a big screen in up to Full HD resolutions without users having to plug their mobile device into the set.

The software is compatible with Directx9 games and higher from any publisher, so that covers plenty of titles on Steam, for example. In addition, Razer is set to release a wireless gaming mouse and lapboard, the Razer Turret, so gamers are not limited to titles that work with gamepads only.

The Forge TV also comes with other benefits of Android, including Google Cast, and it is expected to hit stores in the first quarter of this year. The box on its own will cost 99.99 euros (around £80) with a bundle that includes a controller for 149.99 euros.

Razer Cortex: Stream will be released in beta form in the second quarter and will be free to users of the Razer Forge TV with the controller. The Razer Turrent lapboard will cost 34.99 euros.

Writing by Rik Henderson.