At its [email protected] event for IFA 2019, the Taiwanese firm introduced the usual array of refreshes for its Swift, Predator and ConceptD product lineups, but did make a surprise announcement in the form of Planet9.

This new offering is billed as an esports platform, where Acer will allow players to create gaming communities, receive coaching from experts and provide an opportunity to take their gaming to a professional.

That’s how Acer is describing it at least, with Planet9 not officially available to the public just yet.

Access is on the way, however, with Acer confirming that a closed beta for the platform was made available at IFA 2019 a couple of hours after its press conference wrapped up. Space for this is limited though, which is why a larger open beta for Planet9 is planned for sign-ups come 30th January next year.

“Planet9 is a next-generation esports platform that encompasses what competitive and casual gamers need to level up and participate in esports below the professional tier,” explains Andrew Chuang, GM for esports services, IT products business at Acer.

“Building on Acer’s strength in hardware, software, and services, Planet9 will provide insights to complete the experience for gamers around the world,” he adds.

In terms of features, Planet9 is offering the following:

  • Coach – The Coach feature allows gamers to learn from pro players and skilled players. They can select their ideal coach based on game statistics, language, rating, and hourly rate. Coaches can review the gamer’s game statistics to tailor-make a course, with added screen-sharing, video/voice chat, and VOD upload features to playback gameplay moments.
  • Carry – Players can work together with like-minded gamers to rank up while learning and improving their skills in the process. Hosts can embed their Twitch or YouTube livestreams to attract players and fans to team up with them for a carry session.
  • Game Statistics – All of the player’s gaming statistics are presented in a visualised, eye-catching dashboard. The data on wins, losses, kills, deaths, items purchased, gold farmed, etc. are used to pair the gamer with the most ideal coach and offer insights on ways to improve.
  • Scrims – The platform will offer competitive ways to practice or challenge in battlefields, either with a clan (team) or tribe (multiple clans). The Clan Scrims feature allows clans to request a scrim challenge against other clans, while the Tribe Wars feature allows tribes to participate in extensive competitions being set up every week for bonus and benefits on Planet9.

For now the supported titles on Planet9 are PUBG, League of Legends and Dota 2, but Acer says that more titles will be added in future. At the moment it appears as if Acer is targeting the biggest esports games right now, which would lead us to think that the likes of FIFA and Fortnite aren’t too far away from being added.

Regardless it should be interesting to see how Acer’s new esports venture pans out, especially in terms of creating a competitive community of players.

To sign up for the closed beta or keep up to date on all things Planet9, head here.