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Razer reportedly canceled Razer Phone 3, laid off chunk of staff (Update: Razer confirms lay-offs)

The company says that it still plans to invest in hardware and mobile projects -- does this mean we'll see the Razer Phone 3?

Published onFebruary 20, 2019

Update, February 20, 2019 (1:10AM EST): Razer has issued a second statement to Droid Life, following news that the manufacturer would be laying off roughly two percent of its workforce.

The statement confirms that Razer laid off several employees in its mobile division, but adds that it reassigned some workers to other projects within the company.

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“We see great opportunities in the mobile gaming space that we created with the Razer Phone and will continue to invest in this category through a combination of hardware and software initiatives,” the company noted. “We are working on new exciting mobile projects and will share the news when we are ready. The Razer Phone 2 will continue to be on sale and we are committed to supporting it with the latest updates and features.”

What’s particularly interesting is Razer saying it will invest in hardware and new mobile projects. This doesn’t necessarily mean we’ll see a new Razer Phone, but it does suggest that the company isn’t abandoning the sector just yet.

Original article, February 19, 2019 (1:06PM EST): According to Droid Life, the venerable gaming company Razer just pushed a round of layoffs, affecting about 30 employees, or about two percent of the company’s total workforce. However, those 30 employees are reportedly connected mostly with the mobile division at Razer, which is bad news for the Razer Phone 3.

The source responsible for this news claims that the Razer Phone 3 has been canceled.

Droid Life was able to get a vague comment from Razer regarding the layoff/Razer Phone 3 rumors. We’ve reprinted it below, but it doesn’t exactly clarify much:

Razer has made changes to realign our organization and strengthen our path to growth. We will centralize our resources to focus on key projects and improve our profitability. As part of the realignment, we shut down several projects and unfortunately had to part ways with about 30 employees (about 2% of our total workforce). Other employees of the affected projects will be moved to different parts of Razer to work on other key focus projects and initiatives which will continue to scale and hire.

Per this statement, it’s clear that Razer did layoff 30 employees and also shut down “several projects.” However, the fate of the mobile division and the Razer Phone 3 is still ambiguous.

Hands-on: Razer Phone 2 Android Pie update, rollout to start February 27
Razer Phone 2 Android Pie update photograph

The original Razer Phone landed to much fanfare in 2017 but unfortunately featured a weak camera which prevented it from being recommended by most review sites, including Android Authority. The Razer Phone 2 launched a few months ago to much better reviews and is one of the top choices within the relatively new gaming phone category. As such, the loss of a future Razer Phone is unfortunate.

We learned earlier today that the Razer Phone 2 is about to get the Android 9 Pie update, so all is not lost. However, it’s unclear how software updates will work going forward if the mobile division is in turmoil.

NEXT: Razer Phone 2 review: Going against the grain

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