Logitech has announced it will no longer be manufacturing console gaming peripherals by the end of 2013.
The news comes after the Swiss-based manufacturer's sales performance in Q3 2013 was less-than stellar, with a 14% loss dropping to $615 million and a net loss of $195 million.
"We have initiated the process to divest our remote controls and digital video security categories, and we plan to discontinue other non-strategic products, such as speaker docks and console gaming peripherals, by the end of calendar year 2013."
Of course, this will be a big blow for racing game fans as this potentially marks the end of Logitech's reputable range of racing wheels, including their flagship G27. Logitech will continue to manufacture PC gaming peripherals, however, albeit on a smaller scale.- you could therefore argue that Logitech's wheels are primarily designed for PC with added console functionality, so it's not yet clear if their wheels will be considered as 'non-strategic products'.
We certainly hope not. Both Alan and I hold Logitech's high quality racing peripherals in high regard having stuck with our trusty G25s over the years, so it would be a tremendous shame to see them become extinct.
Then again, Logitech has faced some fierce competition in the wheel market in recent years. Whereas before Logitech previously had the advantage of branding their wheels with the coveted Gran Turismo license (GT3, GT4 and GT5 Prologue all had their own Logitech wheels), times have now changed since Thrustmaster bought out the license and released their ultra-high-end T500. Meanwhile, Fanatec has the Xbox market covered with the Forza-branded CSR and CSR Elite wheels which also support PS3 and PC – Logitech's refusal to partner with Microsoft (or indeed vice versa) could therefore have been a fatal contributing factor.
Logitech's wheels have always been among the best in the market, built with high quality materials and tactile force feedback at an affordable price in comparison to the competition. I can safely say I've owned almost every wheel Logitech has manufactured since the PS2 era, starting with the Driving Force wheel designed for Gran Turismo 3 before upgrading to the Driving Force Pro released alongside Gran Turismo 4, which was notable for being one of the first wheel to feature 900 degree steering. Since then I stuck with my G25 until it recently caved in after years of continuous use, Naturally, I swiftly upgraded to the G27 and haven't looked back.
We'll find out if Logitech intend to continue manufacturing wheels by the end of the year unless they have a surprise PC-only wheel in the works, but for now it might be worth taking the plunge on that G27 purchase you've been on the fence about while you still can!