Razer intros Razer Comms
Razer has announced an all-in-one communication solution, called Razer Comms.
The solution combines VOIP and Internet relay chat (IRC) into one interface that overlays the user's game of choice, according to Razor, a manufacturer of gaming standard peripherals and software.
"As a gamer, it gets pretty annoying switching between multiple clients all the time when playing and talking with your friends," says Min-Liang Tan, Razer co-founder, CEO and creative director. "Razer Comms offers a way around that challenge. By connecting gamers globally through a versatile software solution without any additional costs for the user, Razer Comms is a way for us to give back to our passionate fan base."
Originally born out of Razer employees' "10% time" (when they work on their own projects), it has now picked up traction within the company and gaming community, with Razer seeking active feedback and updating accordingly.
Currently, the service only recognises more recent games, but with time, the repertoire will expand, says Razor. The application runs off a dedicated server infrastructure, and optimises its voice-streaming to enhance precision and minimise timeouts or latency spikes. The company boasts software-based noise reduction and echo cancellation, which is useful for gaming groups.
The voice optimisation is impressive enough that users can use "always on" microphone settings, and not have to worry about bothering their team-mates with eerie echoes of their breathing, GamingIO reports.
While these features may not be unique, Razer Comms offers them for free, and at a higher quality than "free" versions of other applications, like Xfire (which has a free version with a poor reputation and a premium version), notes GamingIO. It also doesn't require users to rent their own servers in the style of Ventrillo or Teamspeak.
Whether this (lack of) pricing will remain when Razer Comms is launched properly, or whether it will follow other similar applications' strategies of using a 'freemium model', the company is yet to specify.
Razer markets itself as providing an "unfair edge" to its customers with its peripherals, and with the release of Comms and Razer's Game Booster, the company's foray into the software market has begun.