As gaming continues to be a major force in popular culture, non-endemic industries are bending towards this audience. The latest company trying to court gamers is Swedish furniture giant Ikea. And it has done so by partnering with Asus ROG to sell a new line of gaming furniture.
Ikea’s new line-up includes typical gaming-centric products like desks and chairs, as well as some stranger products like ring lights, and a pillow with pockets. You just can’t buy any of it right now.
- These are the best office chairs you can buy right now
- Don't forget to check out the best gaming desks for our top picks
- Plus: Apple VR headset could set you back $3,000 — here’s what’s inside
Of course this isn’t the first time Ikea has gone out of its way to market itself to gamers. Just last year it started adding PS5 and Xbox Series X shaped models in its stores. That way people could see whether the furniture they wanted to buy was suitable for storing such gargantuan consoles. However this new range takes things to a whole new level.
Gaming-centric desks and chairs are sensible choices, especially since Ikea already sells a huge range of those products that could be quickly adapted for those needs. One of the desks, the UPPSPEL, has motorized standing features controlled by a number pad on the front. That way you can quickly change between different heights.
I can’t imagine many people will want to game at a standing desk, but this does give you that option. It also means you can use the UPPSPEL as a standing desk for work, and a sitting desk for gaming.
Next we have the very strange LÅNESPELARE, which Ikea describes as a “multifunctional cushion/blanket”. Details seem a little scarce, but it appears to be a cushion that can be unfolded into either a hoody or a slanket of some kind. It’s not clear which. While the press release describes it as a “neck pillow” the images show off something different. Because it has pockets, and we’re not quite sure why that’s happening.
Considering how a lot of clothes, particularly those designed for women, don’t come with the convenience of pockets, it’s bizarre to see Ikea adding it to something as mundane as a pillow.
Also in the LÅNESPELARE range is a mug. A mug with a straw and a specialised mug holder that clamps onto the side of your desk. Because apparently gaming means you don’t have space to physically place the mug on the desk itself. Although in fairness I know how easy it is to clutter up your desk without realising it, and this way you can keep your beverage of choice close to hand.
Likewise the LÅNESPELARE ring light and phone holder are pretty niche, likely designed for streamers, but still offer something of value. Likewise the UPPSPEL drawer unit offers plenty of use cases, even if many of them are not related to gaming. The headphone stand is a nice extra touch as well.
As for the MATCHSPEL chairs, well, it doesn't even look any different from the typical office chairs Ikea already sells. The adjustable headrest looks nice, but it’s not the kind of thing you couldn’t make use of if it was exclusively used as an office chair. However, with a 999 yuan price tag in China (roughly $155), it’s noticeably cheaper than most of the similar-looking office chairs Ikea sells. So, it’s not like Ikea is slapping the word “gamer” on the box and hiking up the price.
Finally there’s the UTESPELARE gaming desk which is, well, just a desk with no extra features.
Ikea’s gaming products have already gone on sale in China, and are set to launch in Japan in May of this year. The rest of the world are going to have to wait quite some time, however, because Ikea is not expected to ship globally until October.