The ASUS ROG Phone 5 is a Ridiculously Overpowered Android Gaming Handset

The front and backside of the ASUS ROG 5 Phone
ASUS

How much phone is too much? That seems like the question the new ASUS ROG Phone 5 wants to answer. At the top end, it comes with 18 GBs of RAM, 512 GBs of storage, and a beefy Snapdragon 888 processor. And the backside has a second small OLED display, the sides have ultrasonic shoulder triggers, and a 6,000 mAh battery powers the thing. It’s a lot of phone, for a lot of money.

ASUS positions the ROG Phone 5 as a gaming phone, and it’s the fourth phone in the lineup. If you’re wondering what happened to the ROG Phone 4, ASUS skipped that number in line with some Tetraphobia. But the latest ROG phone might be the most extra Android yet from the company, or possibly any company.

It comes in three flavors, but all of them share some of the main specs. You’ll get a 6.78-inch Samsung E4 AMOLED display with 2,448 x 1,080 resolution and a 144 Hz refresh rate. On the backside, you’ll find a small “ROG Vision” PMOLED color screen. It comes with several premade graphics you can display, or you can make your own. If you feel so inclined, you can display gifs or scrolling text.

The backside of a  ASUS ROG 5 Phone displaying a small OLED screen
ASUS

You’ll also find multiple USB-C ports so you can charge the phone in landscape or portrait mode, ultrasonic shoulder triggers that presumable work better than touchscreen controls, and an in-display fingerprint reader.

For your photo needs, the phone sports a 64-megapixel lens, 13-megapixel ultra-wide lens, and a 5-megapixel macro lens triple array system. The front side camera houses a single 24-megapixel lens. A 6,000 mAh battery powers the thing, and when you need to charge, ASUS will include a 65-watt fast charger. All three use the same powerful Snapdragon 888 processor.

If you’re a fan of high-end audio and the classic headphone jack, you’ll be happy to see ASUS included the 3.5 mm jack here. But to amp up the sound for all your gaming action, it also has an ESS ES9280AC Pro quad DAC for hi-res audio. 

How much RAM and storage you get depends on whether you choose the ASUS ROG Phone 5 Ultimate, the ROG Phone 5 Pro, or standard ROG Phone 5. The first gets 18 GBs LPDDR5 and 512 GBs UFS 3.1 storage. The second step down to 16 GBs LPDDR5 while maintaining 512 GBs UFS 3.1 storage. And the third gives you the option of 8 GBs,12 GBs, or 16 GBs LPDDR5 of RAM while stepping down to 256 GB UFS 3.1 storage.

A fan clip on accessory with trigger buttons
ASUS

If all that sounds like more than you’ll ever need for Android gaming, you’re not alone—especially in a cloud gaming-focused age. But it also makes it future-proof as the phone ages. Since gaming is the focus, you can overclock the processor, and ASUS even has an optional accessory to help.

The AeroActive Cooler 5 is a clip-on fan that blows cool air right at the parts of the phone most prone to overheating. But that’s not all it does. The fan includes two programmable trigger buttons and a tripod. Grab it, and you’ll keep the phone cooler while making gaming more comfortable.

We don’t know yet how much the phone will cost in the U.S., ASUS didn’t announce pricing or a release date for the United States. In Europe, the phone will cost between 799 euros and 1,299 euros depending on the exact configuration you choose. The low-end ROG 5 Phone will arrive in March, while the Pro Edition releases in April. The Ultimate option should release sometime in May.

Source: ASUS

Josh Hendrickson Josh Hendrickson
Josh Hendrickson has worked in IT for nearly a decade, including four years spent repairing and servicing computers for Microsoft. He’s also a smarthome enthusiast who built his own smart mirror with just a frame, some electronics, a Raspberry Pi, and open-source code. Read Full Bio »

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