[Update on 23 July]
The company has posted an update on Weibo stating that the phone will start at 5999 Yuan for the regular version, while a Tencent custom version is priced starting at 3499 Yuan. We are unsure of the difference between the two, other than the Tencent version is an 8GB/128GB variant, while the 12GB/512GB variant is priced at 5999 Yuan.
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Thanks to the rapidly growing craze of mobile gaming across the world, mostly driven by PUBG Mobile, phone makers are now rushing to milk this opportunity. Yes, we’re talking about gaming smartphones, which is now a fledgling niche, and the influx of new phones sure is crazy.
Asus also jumped the gun to expand its popular ROG gaming lineup into the smartphone business with the ROG Phone last year. It was a true gaming phone with all the aesthetic and hardware nailed down. Well, that smartphone is now getting an upgrade. Asus ROG Phone 2 has finally gone official today with a specs refresh, the world’s first 120Hz/1ms AMOLED panel, a humongous battery, and much more.
ROG Phone 2: Specs and Features
Asus has played it safe on the design front and carried forward the same metal and glass build of its predecessor to ROG Phone 2. This device does away with some of your clutter and sharp design elements (especially the physical fingerprint sensor) on the rear. It has moved the physical fingerprint sensor under the screen and optimally designed the phone for improved grip and comfort while playing games.
On the front here, ROG Phone 2 sports a 6.59-inch Full-HD+ AMOLED screen with no modern notch or punch-hole design. The highlight here, however, will have to be the fact that it’s the world’s first AMOLED display with a 120HZ refresh rate. Yeah, Asus has made the jump from 90Hz to 120Hz, still keeping the AMOLED display as compared to the LCD panel used by Razer. It also has a 1ms response time, which is unheard of on mobile phones.
The AMOLED panel here boasts a 19.5:9 aspect ratio, with 240Hz touch response that’s similar to Black Shark 2 and true HDR 10 support. It also extends SDR2HDR conversion and DCI-P3 color gamut support to its gaming users. Asus has stuck with huge top and bottom bezels, which have been minimally trimmed when compared to the original ROG Phone. They are here to offer you a dual front-firing stereo experience – the same as its predecessor, which is awesome.
As you would already know, ROG Phone 2 is powered by the Snapdragon 855 Plus chipset that was recently announced by Qualcomm. This is paired with up to 12GB RAM and up to 256GB storage. It runs the same slimmed-down version of Zen UI 6, which is closer to stock Android and was announced with Asus 6z. You’ll get the option to choose between the ZenUI Classic and ROG UI skins to change the look and feel of your gaming phone.
The gaming features are still intact here. The Game Center has been renamed to Armory Crate and shows you everything from RAM, CPU usage to device temperature and control fan accessory. You also get to control the light-up ROG logo onboard from within this app. Asus has also introduced Air Triggers 2 with the second-gen ROG Phone 2. They’re placed more on the edges and have improved vibration latency as compared to the predecessor.
While we all would mostly be concerned with the gaming features of the ROG Phone 2, Asus isn’t cutting corners on the camera front. It has integrated the same flagship dual-camera setup we’ve seen on the Asus 6z on this device. This means you get a primary 48MP (f/1.79) primary lens and a secondary 13MP ultra-wide-angle lens on the rear. It includes a 24MP/4C selfie camera as well, placed strategically to extend a better streaming experience to mobile streamers.
Coming to the thermals, which are an essential component of gaming phones, Asus has again stuck with its three-pronged approach this time around as well. You have a vapor chamber, copper heat spreader, and graphite pads on the inside for heat dissipation. We see this coupled with the new Aeroactive Cooler fan attachment, which is redesigned to offer a quieter experience. It also reduces the temperature by up to 5 degrees.
One of the biggest highlights of ROG Phone 2 (quite literally) will have to be the massive 6,000mAh battery that Asus has packed into this smartphone. Yeah, there’s a 6,000mAh battery on this gaming phone and it can run PUBG Mobile continuously for 10 hours. The company is also offering a 30W HyperCharger in the box and that will top-up 4,000mAh battery in just one hour and that’s insane.
The Asus ROG Phone 2 still offers you dual-USB ports (one at the bottom and one on the side), a 3.5mm headphone jack, and a host of new accessories that are future proof. The gaming desktop dock and professional dock are pretty much the same, but we now have the Twin Dock II with a secondary 120Hz display up-top, an Aero Case with grooves so it enables you to attach the fan over it, and a new Kunai Gamepad that looks and works in sync with the device – just like Nintendo Switch Joy-Cons.
That’s pretty much everything you need to know about the ROG Phone 2, which is again offering you a complete gaming smartphone experience with one-of-its-kind hardware & software features. Asus is looking to pit it against the OnePlus 7 Pro and Galaxy S10, so you can expect more aggressive pricing than its predecessor. What are your thoughts on this upgrade? Let us know your thoughts down in the comments section.