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At MWC 2024 we got hands-on with the upcoming Ayaneo Pocket S

While at Mobile World Conference 2024 we had the chance to get our hands on the exciting new portable gaming console Ayaneo Pocket S.

Ayaneo Pocket S at MWC 2024

There’s a lot of talk right now about the next generation of handheld consoles, with the expectation that Nintendo will drop the Switch 2 next year, suggestions of a new Steam Deck, and reports about the Asus ROG Ally 2. It’s also worth bearing in mind less headline-grabbing brands, too, if you’re looking to keep up-to-date with the latest handheld gaming tech, including the Ayaneo Pocket S.

While journeying bravely through a storm of tech announcements at the 2024 Mobile World Conference (MWC) in Barcelona, our lead hardware journalist, Connor, carved out some time to get his hands on the Ayaneo Pocket S, a wannabe contender for the title of the best portable gaming console.

Connor found the Ayaneo Pocket S tucked away, hidden “among all the latest smartphones at the Qualcomm booth.” He explains that it’s an “upcoming portable console that utilizes the Snapdragon G3x Gen 2 processor” (an incredibly powerful, new chip that promises an optimized balance between performance, visuals, and battery). His first impressions are pretty positive, too.

“It’s got a very usable form factor, with a responsive touch screen, wicked little analog sticks, and triggers that are just the right size for a condensed device,” he says. “The display is vibrant too, which is especially important in this era of graphically impressive mobile games.”

Ayaneo Pocket S at MWC 2024

That being said, he didn’t get the chance to play any brand-new titles firsthand as the games on the device didn’t seem to be up to date. Frustrations with that aside, Connor does report that “it feels like it’s equipped for solid performance, with an overlay that displays live frame rates as well as CPU and GPU performance, and you seemingly can play games like Genshin Impact with controls due to some quality mapping.”

He concludes, “As a mobile gaming-orientated site, this is definitely one we’re keeping an eye on.”

For more of the latest hardware talk, check out our guide to the best gaming phones and best mobile games. Or, see all our speculation about the Switch 2 and Steam Deck 2.