ASUS producing a gaming smartphone is one of the more esoteric news stories at the Computex 2018 trade show this year. To fire a shot right across the bow of Razer, ASUS is putting its ROG credentials on display: a speed-binned Snapdragon 845 running at a higher frequency than the standard S845 smartphones, a higher-than-standard 90 Hz refresh rate display with 1ms response time and 108% DCI-P3 gamut, programmable ultrasonic AirTrigger sensors, force feedback, and additional docks for purchase. One of the key elements is that ASUS built this phone with an 11mm thickness, well beyond the 7-8mm we see on flagship smartphones today. They have put that additional volume to incredible use for extra battery, more haptics, bigger speakers, more connectivity, and it's a showcase of what we could see if other smartphone manufacturers offered a bit extra z-height.

The 6-inch 2160x1080 AMOLED display is paired with the high-performance Snapdragon 845 SoC, 8GB DRAM, 128GB and 512GB of UFS 2.1 storage, along with a 4000 mAh battery, 20W ASUS Hyper Charge, support for 24-bit audio, and Corning Gorilla glass. One of ASUS’s key marketing points is the use of ASUS Aura RGB lighting, with the company stating that this is one of the first phones (if not the first) to fully exploit RGB in this way.

Comparing the size of the LG V30 (left) and ROG phone (right). It's big

For control, ASUS will be adding three ultrasonic air touch sensors – two shoulder triggers being the main ones. These are designed to be fully programmable and are more sensitive with haptic feedback.

With the AeroActive cooler, which is bundled with the phone, aside from an additional fan to help cool the phone and sweaty fingers, it provides an extra USB Type-C connector which is side mounted for direct charging, HDMI output, Gigabit Ethernet, and headphones.

Bundled AeroActive Cooler, attaches to side port

How the cooler is inserted

ASUS will be offering the ROG Phone with a series of accessories, including a TwinView Dock to convert the machine into a dual-screen hand-held console. The Dock also offers front-facing quad-speakers, two extra physical trigger buttons, better haptic feedback, an enhanced cooling system, and a 6000 mAh extended battery back. 

The Mobile Desktop Dock, another accessory, allows the phone to be connected to a 4K monitor, mouse, keyboard, and wired gigabit networking.

Desktop Dock, Rear

The Gamevice controller and the WiGig dock, also to be available, focuses on 802.11ad wireless display connections as well as a dual analog stick gaming – like a console


Processor   World’s fastest, speed-binned 2.96Ghz octa-core Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 845 
Mobile Platform
GPU   Qualcomm® Adreno™ 630
UI   ROG Gaming UI
Display   6.0“ 18:9 (2160x1080) AMOLED 
90Hz refresh rate with 1ms pixel response time
108.6% DCI-P3 color gamut
10000:1 contrast ratio
Capacitive touchscreen with 10-point multi-touch (supports Glove Touch)
Discrete image processing chip support HDR display – gaming, video & images
Dimensions   158.8 x 76.2 x 8.6mm
Weight   200g
Battery   4,000mAh
Memory   LPDDR4 8GB RAM
Storage   UFS 2.1, 128GB / 512GB
Sensors   Accelerometer, e-compass, proximity sensor, Hall sensor, ambient-light sensor, fingerprint sensor, gyroscope, 2 x ultrasonic AirTrigger sensors
Wireless connectivity   802.11a/b/g/n/ac/ad 2x2 MIMO; Wi-Fi Direct and Wi-Fi Certified WiGig® 802.11ad wireless display support
Bluetooth® 5.0
GPS   Supports GPS, aGPS, Glonass, BeiDou
I/O ports   Side: 
Custom USB-C™ 
Supports USB 3.1 Gen 1 / DP 1.4 (4K) / fast charging (QC 3.0 +QC 4.0/PD 3.0) (15W) 
ASUS HyperCharge direct charging

Supports USB 2.0 / fast charging (QC3.0/PD3.0) (20W) / Direct Charge
3.5mm headphone jack
Front Camera   8MP
Main Camera   12MP + 8MP (120° wide-angle)
Voice Wakeup   Yes
Speakers   Dual front-facing stereo speakers with smart amplifier
24-bit/192KHz Hi-Res Audio
DTS Headphone:X™ 7.1 virtual surround-sound
Qualcomm® aptX™ High-definition Bluetooth® wireless audio
NFC   Supported

More information as we get it at the show, hopefully with some hands on.

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  • Trackster11230 - Monday, June 4, 2018 - link

    I love my Switch, but these serve two somewhat different segments of the gaming market. This phone seems to be aimed towards gamers looking to upgrade their phone more in-line with gaming features (and still function as a phone), wherein the Switch is designed to be a semi-portable console almost exclusively.
  • Manch - Monday, June 4, 2018 - link

    That's what we're saying. Switch = Gaming Console, ROG = Jack of All Trades, Master of None. I'd rather just have a separate Switch and a smart phone.
  • SpartanJet - Monday, June 4, 2018 - link

    Woah! Imagine how many cash shop transactions per second you can do on this thing! No but seriously gaming on Android? I mean there are no phone games that dont try and nickle and dime people to death.
  • PeachNCream - Monday, June 4, 2018 - link

    There are good games you can buy outright on Android and others you can get for free plus the cost is generally lower for mobile than it is for the PC if you factor in the PC's total cost of ownership versus the phone you're going to own anyway just to communicate in modern society. You do have to exercise some selectivity and searching out good entertainment takes a bit of effort. As it stands, PC gaming is frustrating in its own right for a variety of reasons. Most of my gaming now takes place on my phone or rather my older phone that doesn't have cell service since I don't want to get caught out someplace with a dead battery on the thing I might need to use to call for help. I use my computer for more mundane tasks like fetching e-mail or lengthy writing where a keyboard is a good thing, but where system requirements can remain low enough to keep the PC from being an expensive piece of hardware.
  • edgineer - Monday, June 4, 2018 - link

    I'd specifically like to commend the reporting on the USB type-C port specs! Down to the supported charging power, this article tells me exactly what data, power, and video protocols these type-C ports support.

    Excellent job, and I hope to be just as informed in the future!
  • ZeDestructor - Monday, June 4, 2018 - link

    Things it has:
    Enough CPU and GPU power (by quite a margin)
    8GB RAM
    128GB or 512GB storage
    400+ppi screen
    Screen no wider than 68.5mm
    Larger than average battery
    USB-C with USB-PD (do wish it had USB3 though)
    3.5mm jack
    A dock!

    Things it doesn't have:
    Bootloader unlock (no idea what's gonna happen there)
    microSD slot (probably won't have one, but one can hope)

    All in all, I'm liking this one.. might even pick one up later when it's out
  • peevee - Monday, June 4, 2018 - link

    "USB-C with USB-PD (do wish it had USB3 though)"

    It does on the side one. Unless it is not really USB-C as the table says (what the heck is "Custom USB-C"?)
  • ZeDestructor - Tuesday, June 5, 2018 - link

    I just have no idea if you can plug a regular USB-C cable in: looking at the little fan accessory, it looks like it might be a longer-than-normal connector.
  • HardwareDufus - Monday, June 4, 2018 - link

    if this thing just had Dual Sim, Dual Active... it would be absolutely perfect.
  • ZeDestructor - Monday, June 4, 2018 - link

    Being an Asian-market focused phone, it will probably have at least Dual-SIM Dual-Standby.

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