Razer stole the spotlight at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) by unveiling a prototype laptop with three integrated displays—a center panel and two that fold out on both sides—only to have two of them stolen right from under its nose at the conclusion of the convention. The pinched "Project Valerie" laptops have since shown up an online auction site in China with an asking price of 150,000 Yuan (nearly $22,000 in U.S. currency) each.
It was not initially clear what exactly had been stolen from Razer. When the theft first occurred, Razer CEO Min-Lian Tan posted a message on Facebook saying that two of the company's prototypes had been stolen from its booth. He hinted that "industrial espionage" could be at play and asked for anyone with information about the theft to reach out to Razer's legal team.
A little while later Razer issued a second statement, this one confirming that the two prototypes were both Project Valerie laptops (Razer had also trotted out a prototype projector at CES called Project Ariana). According to Razer, the theft took place at its press room, not a booth as Tan original indicated, at around 4 PM on Sunday, January 8, the last day of the convention. It offered a $25,000 award for information leading to the "identification, arrest, and conviction" of the person or people responsible.
The culprit apparently managed to get the stolen laptops overseas and has brazenly offered them up for sale, assuming the auction is not a prank. It is probably not the smartest idea to offer up a stolen high-profile item for sale to the public, as that will only make it easier for track down who is responsible. Perhaps the thief or thieves thought the auction would not be picked up by the media.
It is not clear how functional the laptops are. Razer is pitching Project Ariana as the world's first automated triple display notebook. It has three 17.3-inch 4K resolution displays for a combined resolution of 11520x2160 and is powered by an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 GPU.