Those of you mulling a purchase of the Asus ROG Ally gaming handheld who’ve been waiting for the price to come down, well, heads up – this has happened.
The ROG Ally is sold by Asus itself and Best Buy in the US, and while pricing hasn’t changed for the two versions in the Asus store – the ROG Ally Z1 remains $600, and the ROG Ally Z1 Extreme is $700 – at Best Buy, both models have been knocked down in price.
However, the vanilla Z1 version has been reduced by $200, so it can now be bagged for $400 (as we write this), while the Z1 Extreme handheld has a $100 cut meaning it’s $600.
So, the result is the base version of the Asus ROG Ally is $200 cheaper rather than $100, and given the performance difference between AMD’s Ryzen Z1 and Z1 Extreme APUs, that makes a lot more sense. (Note that aside from the chip, the specs of these models are the same).
Analysis: Z1 is a viable alternative at this price (finally)
When the Z1-toting variant of the Asus ROG Ally turned up in September – it launched a good deal later than the Z1 Extreme – there was disappointment that the product was priced so closely to its faster sibling.
The problem is the Z1 Extreme offers way better performance in games (with two more CPU cores, and a lot more integrated graphics power), and frankly, paying $100 more to get that is an absolute no-brainer.
At least a $200 price gap, what with being able to get the base Z1 handheld at a much more affordable $400 at Best Buy now, means it’s a genuine alternative.
Why has this happened? Well, the most likely pressures are the arrival of the Lenovo Legion Go, a rival Windows-powered handheld with some distinct advantages, or the new Steam Deck OLED (with its tempting new screen and battery life advances).
Is this $200 price cut for the Asus ROG Ally Z1 temporary, mind you? It looks that way, given that it hasn’t been applied on the Asus store itself – unless that move is about to happen.
We shall see, but we aren’t witnessing this larger price cut outside of the US. However, in the UK, on the Asus store there’s £100 knocked off both models at the time of writing – but there’s no extra reduction for the vanilla Z1 model. Watch this space, we guess, but we’ve a feeling the $200 discount may not last all that long in the US…