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Asus ROG Phone 2 review

The ROG Telephone 2 is a top-spec gaming telephone after which some, with a Snapdragon 855+, a bunch of devoted gaming equipment, and a monstrous 6,000mAh battery. Discover out extra in our full evaluation.

The gaming telephone market barely existed a yr or two in the past, and it’s now exploded into not solely one of many quickest rising components of the market, but additionally one which’s driving among the largest technical advances. So it’s with the Asus ROG Telephone 2 – each the primary telephone on the planet to characteristic the souped up Snapdragon 855+ processor and a battery behemoth with a whopping 6,000mAh of capability to play with.

The ROG Telephone 2 received our Greatest in Present award at IFA 2019. Discover out what else received awards.

Worth & Availability

The ROG Telephone 2 is out now, with three fashions accessible within the UK.

The most affordable is the budget-ish Strix Version, which for £599.99 consists of 8GB RAM and 128GB storage – strong specs by another measure, however restricted by ROG Requirements,

The Elite Version is absolutely the primary ROG Telephone 2, with 12GB RAM and 512GB storage and £829 worth level. That is additionally the one mannequin out within the US, the place it prices $899.

Lastly, if you wish to spend a little bit extra, £899 will get you the much more highly effective Final Version, which upgrades storage to 1TB, throws in a Cat 20 LTE modem for 2Gbps speeds, and boasts a matt black end.

In the event you’re completely satisfied to ship from China GearBest has a superb deal on the ROG Telephone 2.

Verify our chart of the most effective gaming telephones to see what rivals there are.

The quickest telephone on the planet?

On paper, the ROG Telephone 2 has a reputable declare to being the quickest and strongest smartphones in existence .

That’s mainly as a result of along with a monstrous 12GB of RAM and 512GB of storage in the primary mannequin, it’s the primary telephone to launch packing Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 855+ processor – an improved model of the corporate’s flagship chip that reinforces CPU efficiency by a slender 4% and GPU speeds by a a lot meatier 15%.

To the common telephone consumer that received’t imply a lot – and even actually be noticeable in day-to-day utilization. However when you’re throwing some critical video games at it day-in, day-out, then that additional efficiency will begin to add up in frames per second. It helps that with strong cooling (and an non-compulsory fan accent) there needs to be no want for throttling efficiency even at excessive masses.

You possibly can see our benchmark outcomes beneath in contrast with its predecessor and key rivals just like the Razer Telephone 2 and Crimson Magic 3. As you’ll be able to see, it is tight on the high, however the ROG Telephone 2 smashed it out the park by successful in each single check.

It is maybe attention-grabbing to notice you could get comparable scores, significantly in Geekbench, with telephones just like the iPhone XR nevertheless it does not have all of the gaming prowess of the ROG Telephone 2.

You’ll want each body you will get too, if you wish to benefit from the 6.59in AMOLED show. It now packs a 120Hz refresh price – up from 90Hz within the unique ROG Telephone – which suggests silky clean navigation and scrolling, and even smoother efficiency in video games like MOBAs the place the excessive refresh price tends to pay dividends.

Observe that the display screen is about to 60Hz by default so you may need to head into the settings to vary it – 90Hz can be an choice if you need a half approach home.

At 19.5:9 the panel is taller and thinner than its predecessor – in keeping with most different flagship telephones nowadays – and there’s HDR10 assist too, which suggests nice distinction and shiny, punchy colors. Oh, and it’s all coated in Gorilla Glass 6, so it should not break simply both.

Asus claims the show can attain a whopping 600 nits exterior and in our check we discovered most brightness to be a powerful 587. You should have little hassle seeing what’s on the display screen even in difficult situations with that stage – it is greater than double most telephones.

All of that energy means critical energy drain after all – which is the place the virtually absurd 6,000mAh battery is available in. This is among the largest batteries ever seen in something near a mainstream telephone, and along with 30W quick charging (Fast Cost 4.0) that is undoubtedly the most effective telephones in the marketplace – gaming or in any other case – from an influence perspective.

With no gaming, this telephone has the potential to final three or possibly even 4 days relying on utilization. For gaming, it may final even a protracted session lasting just a few hours. In our checks it lasted a ridiculous 12 hours and 56 minutes (the longest we have seen so far) within the Geekbench Four battery check and charged a whopping 44% in 30 minutes from lifeless regardless of the scale of the battery.

The ROG Telephone 2 may also reverse cost in case you have one other gadget that wants topping up. The one factor lacking right here actually is wi-fi charging.

Lastly, cameras. They don’t often wow on gaming telephones, however Asus has squeezed in the identical rear shooters seen on the ZenFone 6: a 48Mp main lens (f/1.eight lens at 26mm), backed up by a 13Mp ultra-wide angle shooter (f/2.Four and 125-degrees) all powered by Sony’s IMX586 sensor.

There’s solely digital stabilisation right here nevertheless it’s respectable and photographs from each cameras have lots going for them. The primary sensor is able to some wonderful photographs with plenty of element and subsequent to no noise whereas the wide-angle matches lots into the body with out an excessive amount of distortion. There is a 2x button within the digital camera app nevertheless it’s only a cropped picture, not an precise telephoto lens.

Each HDR+ Auto and HDR+ Enhanced modes yeild good outcomes and you’ll select which you favor. There isn’t any want to show HDR off although actually. You additionally get issues like a Professional and Portrait modes – the latter is okay, however you get blur the place you do not need it generally attributable to utilizing the wide-angle lens for depth sensing.

Low gentle photographs are about common with a Evening mode serving to out nevertheless it’s not so good as among the non-gaming flagships on the market.

Asus ROG Phone 2 camera test

There isn’t any fancy flip spherical digital camera just like the ZenFone 6 however the selfie shooter is not any slouch both – it’s 24Mp (f/2.2) and takes cheap photographs and can suffice for 1080p streaming when you want.

Total then, it might’t beat among the high flagships within the total telephone market however within the gaming telephone sector it is simply the most effective we have examined so far.

Constructed like a beast

After all, all that tech makes the ROG Telephone 2 a little bit of a giant boi. It’s not unreasonably huge, although at 240g it’s actually heavy (even a hefty handset is below 200g), and the 6.59in display screen is complemented by bezels on the high and backside that make it even larger than these specs may recommend.

The design is broadly much like the primary ROG Telephone – suppose plenty of jagged traces and angular cut-outs – however feels subtly refined, and the taller, slimmer design fits the aggressive aesthetic properly. It can attraction to players, together with the uncovered copper which is a part of the cooling system.

One of many predominant variations you may discover is the dearth of a fingerprint scanner – which was essentially the most weird form we have seen – becuase now it is embedded into the show like many telephones this yr. Sadly, we have discovered it to be a little bit unreliable however the face unlock works fairly properly. 

There’s nonetheless area for the double USB-C port on the aspect that Asus makes use of to energy its equipment (extra on them beneath) together with a 3.5mm headphone jack for audio – although front-facing audio system with DTS:X Extremely assist means the telephone sounds good whether or not you’re plugged in or not. The audio high quality and sound stage is astonishing.

That aspect port is as soon as once more plugged by a small rubber piece that you’re going to little question lose pretty shortly. Asus consists of two spares within the field, although.

It wouldn’t be a gaming gadget with out RGB lighting, and as soon as once more the ROG brand on the again of the gadget can glow, pulse, flash (or simply flip off fully) in accordance with your wishes, with the choice to set completely different results primarily based on whether or not the display screen is one or off, whether or not overclocked X-Mode is on or not, or for incoming calls or notifications.

Included within the field is an ‘Aero Case’ which provides a skeletal design to mix safety with out limiting cooling. It largely protects the corners and will assist in the occasion of a drop, plus can be utilized with the AeroActive Cooler 2 or TwinView Dock 2 so no must be taking it off on a regular basis.

Geared to recreation

Asus hasn’t targeted all of its consideration on the telephone itself although. The unique ROG Telephone shipped with just a few non-compulsory equipment, and this time round Asus has upped the ante even additional.

The clip-on fan – the AeroActive Cooler II – makes a return, however this time it’s quieter, and doubles as a helpful kickstand when you want it to – however that’s solely the start.

The Kunai gamepad takes just a few cues from the Swap, with a pair of slim controller halves that may both mix to kind a single gamepad or connect to both aspect of the telephone itself to create a full transportable console expertise.

In the event you don’t fancy paying additional for bodily buttons, the same old gaming contact controls are supplemented by the return of the Air Triggers – strain delicate buttons constructed into the body of the telephone that function helpful shoulder buttons when used panorama. They’ve adjustable sensitivity, and may double as shortcuts if you’re out of a recreation similar to Lively Edge on the Pixel 3. In varied video games, significantly first particular person shooters, you may acquire a pleasant advtange as a result of additional management.

Then there’s the TwinView Dock 2 which supplies you a full second display screen for multi-tasking (very similar to within the LG V50) – although in traditional Asus overkill, that is additionally 120Hz and packs its personal 5,000mAh battery. Throw in a wide range of docks for connecting different units or hooking the telephone as much as a monitor, and you’ve got extra add-ons than you may shake a stick at – or afford.

Asus ROG Phone 2 software

Oh, and when you get fed up of the gamer life, there’s now the choice to swap the UI from Asus’s ROG-specific pores and skin (in darkish or gentle) to a traditional Android look in case you need one thing a little bit extra pared again. The gaming interface will doubtless attraction although, and as soon as once more animates if you swap X Mode on – this provides you most efficiency.

That is a part of Android 9 Pie which the telephone ships with. Gaming pores and skin apart, issues are fairly inventory and there aren’t too many pre-installed apps both. Primarily Netflix after which a handful of Asus own-brand additions. 

The Armoury Crate is the place there’s some fairly cool stuff together with a console the place you’ll be able to see the CPU and GPU clock speeds and temperature. It’s also possible to fiddle with varied options just like the Air Triggers, system lighting, fan velocity and Recreation Genie.


Between the ZenFone 6 and the ROG Telephone 2, Asus is on a little bit of a roll with its telephones this yr. Combining the ZenFone’s sturdy digital camera with over-the-top specs and a wealth of gaming add-ons means this is among the few gaming telephones that doesn’t ask you to compromise on different components.

Though you’ll be able to go for a traditional Android consumer interface, this telephone is absolutely all concerning the angles and lights in a typical gaming gadget approach. In the event you’re searching for a gaming telephone then it is more likely to attraction however others have a extra delicate design if it is an excessive amount of.

With regards to efficiency and options although, the ROG Telephone 2 is just the most effective with its Snapdragon 855+ processor, 120Hz show, 6000mAh battery, Air Triggers, AeroLively Cooler II, Recreation Genie and a lot extra together with an enormous vary of non-compulsory equipment. Even the cameras are fairly nice, which isn’t one thing we’re used to saying for gaming telephones. 

All of this at a worth decrease than many high flagship telephones. It is nonetheless a chunky monkey, however that is type of what you get if you need all these things in a telephone, together with that massive battery.

The ROG Telephone 2 is not a telephone for the plenty nevertheless it does precisely what it units out to realize – be the most effective gaming telephone you should buy. There are cheaper ones accessible if it is too expensive, although the funds Strix Version helps right here too.


Asus ROG Telephone 2: Specs

  • Android 9.0
  • 6.59in (2340×1080, 391ppi) 120Hz AMOLED show
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 Plus processor
  • 12GB RAM
  • 128/512GB/1TB storage
  • In-screen fingerprint scanner
  • Twin rear-facing cameras: 48Mp + 13Mp ultrawide, part detection autofocus, LED flash
  • 24Mp front-facing digital camera
  • 802.11ac/advert Wi-Fi
  • Bluetooth 5.Zero with atpX HD
  • GPS
  • NFC
  • USB-C 3.1
  • Entrance going through stereo audio system, sensible amplifier
  • Headphone jack
  • Non-removable 6,000mAh battery
  • 171×77.6×9.5mm
  • 240g

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