Lian-Li is best known for its extensive lineup of cases, and at CES this year, the company was in full force with a booth full of them. However, the company is also taking a step in another direction with a new set of products: peripherals, specifically keyboards and mice.
The main purpose of Lian-Li’s set of peripherals is to provide a matching color scheme to your Lian-Li case, so if you have a black case, then you can get a black mouse and black keyboard to complement it. The ones on display at CES featured green and gold variations.
Even though the keyboards and mice were still prototypes, it gave us with an idea of what they would look like in final production. Instead of the bulky mechanical keyboards that we’re accustomed to from many other companies, these were thin and had an aluminum casing. As for the keys, they seem to have chiclet-style switches. Overall, Lian-Li’s device almost resemble Apple’s own wireless keyboard.
As for the mouse, it comes with the usual two buttons and the scroll wheel. It seemed to be made mostly out of glossy plastic, but Lian-Li said that the material might change for the final product.
It’s obvious that these aren’t made for gamers. Instead, they seem tailored for a work-oriented setting. The peripherals have a simple design that isn’t too distracting, but it does provide some sort of uniformity with the color of the case.
In terms of the bigger picture, Lian-Li’s entry into the peripherals market is an indication that specializing in one area of computer hardware isn’t enough. Companies like Lian-Li are already well-known in the industry for a specific product, and it’s using that reputation to attract more customers to an entirely new set of items under the same name.
G.Skill, which was known primarily for system memory, recently came out with a set of peripherals: two gaming headsets, a mouse and a keyboard -- a first for the company. Another example is Corsair, which still has a reputation in cases and more recently led the way for RGB lighting on gaming keyboards, but is trying to push into the realm of living room systems with its Bulldog gaming system.
It’s still unclear if this will be a worthwhile investment for Lian-Li, as it’s entering a heavily-saturated peripherals market. Both products will still need some development and changes in production before they launch. Lian-Li didn’t specify a release date for the keyboard and mouse, but it does plan to sell both devices as a bundle for $45.