Alienware enters console gaming with Alpha

Premium PC brand extends its reach from the desktop into the living room.

Alienware is moving into the living room with the announcement of its compact Alpha PC.

The premium gaming PC brand, which was purchased by Dell in 2006, has so far been limited to desktop gaming, although the company is now setting its sights on the console space dominated by the likes of Sony and Microsoft.

Dell A/NZ end user computing general manager, Jeff Morris, said that the Alpha is not a media hub slapped on with an Alienware logo.

“The Alienware Alpha is first a foremost a gaming console, but also so much more,” he said.

Morris explained the Alpha has been built with same “freedom and full capability of a PC,” which includes access to web-based content and applications, pictures, videos and music.

Windows 8.1 at the core

The Alpha uses Microsoft’s Windows 8.1 operating system as its foundation, though the familiar desktop and start screen are not immediately shown to the user.

The system instead boots up to a custom Alpha User Interface created by the team at Alienware.

The Windows 8.1 interface is already familiar to users around the world since the operating system launched in 2012, though Morris said a different approach was needed with the Alpha.

“With a completely new chassis design not seen on any other Alienware product, we wanted to create a new user interface with the living room in mind,” he said.

Morris added it was important for gamers to control the console without the need for a traditional keyboard or mouse.

“Our unique UI also provides controller support to modify system settings such as network or Bluetooth, and the dashboard allows for future extensions and new features,” he said.

Read more: Foxtel now on the PlayStation 4

The “Console” mode essentially displays the Steam Big Picture screen with full controller support, though users who want full Windows 8.1 functionality can switch to “Desktop” mode and connect a keyboard and mouse.

Australian release confirmed

Morris confirms the Alpha is slated for release in Australia later this year, with local pricing and configuration to be revealed at a later date closer to launch.

Read more: Final Fantasy X/X-2 HD Remaster (PlayStation Vita) review

All that he can share at the moment is that the Alpha was “purpose-built” to be used on a big screen, and by extension, the living room.

“Its small, quiet, and power efficient design lends itself to living room aesthetics, all while delivering the incredible trademark performance you’d expect from an Alienware,” Morris said.

Gamers will also be able to “fully immerse themselves in the gaming experience” by easily connecting a home theatre to the system.

“We want to ensure our gamers will have the same, if not a better, experience playing games on our console in the living room,” Morris said.

Patrick Budmar covers consumer and enterprise technology breaking news for IDG Communications. Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_budmar.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags playstationDellAlienwareXboxWindows 8Steam

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.
Patrick Budmar

Patrick Budmar

PC World
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?