HP to unveil new PC gaming brand

New segment will appeal to performance, bargain hunters

Later this year, computer maker Hewlett-Packard (HP) is to unveil a new PC brand that it hopes will attract buyers on a budget who still want a powerful machine.

The new segment in HP's PC lineup has yet to be named but the company is clear about who they are targeting. "[They] are customers who are going up to the high end, but don't need all the customisation," Phil McKinney, vice president of HP's gaming business, said in a statement .

Highlighting HP's progress in PC gaming since buying Voodoo last year, the new PC strategy was outlined to target "customers who want a lot of performance, but don't really need the fancy designs and expensive bells and whistles that come along with a Voodoo system".

Rahul Sood, founder of Voodoo and now chief technology officer for HP's gaming division, described the new PC segment as a 'Mercedes' brand sitting between HP's other brands. Voodoo is at the top end of the scale, HP Pavilion is somewhere in the middle, and Compaq down the bottom, and the new brand would end up sandwiched somewhere in the middle of the three in terms of price and performance.

The new systems will include desktops, notebooks and handhelds, and should be available by the end of 2007, McKinney said.