One of the phrases I no longer hear in this industry is ‘Cyber Café’. A remnant of the past, at least here in the west, a gaming or cyber café was a place where a user could buy some PC time and play the best titles of the time with friends, either in the same room or across the internet. It offers an inexpensive way to get into gaming with middle-end kit and comfy seats without shelling out for a full system. However, these venues are now few and far between in North America and Europe, but business is still going strong in Asia. We see this with gaming café products in the market from motherboard and GPU manufacturers, as these venues can hold 200+ machines at once and generate a lot of foot traffic day in and day out. These places allow users to book seats from home, and even order food from a kitchen to arrive at the desk you are playing at. It really is a world away from what most of us are used to on this side of the world.

Now I mention all this because we got a surprise when we hit the GeIL / EpicGear booth at Computex this year. It was one of the more impressive looking booths of the show just because of the design: it felt totally futuristic and sci-fi, and then I learned why they designed the booth in this way. The goal here for EpicGear is to provide all-in-one turnkey solutions for cyber cafés that can be deployed in days/weeks, rather than months.

 
Walking into the booth, from Level1Techs

Around the booth were gaming machines set up with monitors and chairs, and spaces to act like a bar or to serve food. Call it Star Trek-esque or Guardians of the Galaxy-a-like, but it does look like something ripped out of a science fiction universe.

It was unclear if the goal of these turnkey solutions was to provide the PCs as well, but our rep stated that the goal would be to work with the client, map the space, and provide almost everything needed to get up and running with this style of venue within three weeks from agreement to revenue. This includes the desks, wall modules, lights, etc. I know a couple of other journalists saw the setup and also agreed that it is a shame we don’t have this sort of thing over here.


It's time to eat food and kill some enemies

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  • twtech - Tuesday, July 03, 2018 - link

    "Homeless" makes it sound like these people sleep on the street at night. The way I have heard it, from a US soldier who was stationed in Korea at the time, is that it's normal for young men to live at home until they get married and start a family of their own. So they aren't out living on the street, but they also don't have their own space. The cybercafes are where they can go in their free time away from their parents and other relatives. Reply
  • twtech - Tuesday, July 03, 2018 - link

    I think if I were running a cybercafe, I'd want to keep the PCs in a locked room - possibly rackmount - and just run cables to the individual stations. I think it's probably a more efficient use of floor space, and would limit potential downtime - if a PC goes down but I have a spare in the server room, all I'd need to do is change which PC the cables are connected to, and that station is right back in business while I work on fixing the broken machine. Reply

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