Asus used to follow an annual update for its gaming-centric ROG Phone series but it seems they are bucking the trend with the new ROG Phone 5. Not only the ROG Phone 5 is now official in under a year, Asus has also expanded the ROG Phone series with two additional devices, making the total count to three new ROG Phones.
Let’s start with the regular ROG Phone 5. It’s an improvised version of the ROG Phone 3 with improved hardware and a more refined design. The front features a 6.78-inch AMOLED display from Samsung that boasts a refresh rate of 144Hz along with 1ms response time, 300Hz touch sampling and HDR10+ support. Covering the premium display is Corning’s Gorilla Glass Victus, which is the latest and the strongest protection against scratches and screen bumps.
The back, however, has a slightly different story and now comes with Aura RGB Lighting that lets one configure the colours of the ROG logo at the back.
It’s a gaming phone so it goes without saying that it comes with the best hardware the industry has to offer and it is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 888 that gives a major boost to graphical and processing performance and choice of 8GB or 12GB of LPDDR5 RAM along with UFS 3.1 internal storage.
The phone has three rear cameras, starting with the 64GB IMX686 sensor that can record videos in up to 8K at 30fps, a 13MP secondary sensor and a 5MP macro. A 24MP takes up the selfie duty.
Battery was never the issue with ROG Phones and the ROG Phone 5 series is no different. It is equipped with two 3000mAh batteries, cumulatively giving about 6000mAh worth of run time and supports up to 65W of fast charging but comes with a 30W charger in the box.
Expectedly, ROG Phone 5 is packed with gaming-centric features like a large copper 3D vapour chamber for improved cooling, AirTriggers at the top that acts as shoulder buttons and a host of accessories for mobile gaming like the new AeroActive Cooler 5, ROG Cetra II Core Headset and Kunai 3 Gamepad.
Asus also announced the ROG Phone 5 Ultimate and ROG Phone 5 Pro that features 18GB and 16GB RAM and 512GB of internal storage. Both phones add rear capacitive buttons and ROG Vision PMOLED display at the back that allows for more customisation (instead of the colourful ROG logo). The only difference between the ROG Vision in both phones is that the Ultimate variant will have a monochrome display whereas the Pro will have a colour screen.
Interestingly, all variants of the ROG Phone 5 will arrive in India with the availability expected to start from April 15 on Flipkart for Rs. 49,999 and Rs. 57,999 for the ROG Phone 5; Rs. 69,999 for the ROG Phone 5 Pro and Rs. 79,999 for the ROG Phone 5 Ultimate.
We managed to get our hands on an early unit of the regular ROG Phone 5 and AeroActive Cooler 5. During our brief use, the phone felt snappy as it should be with the fastest mobile chip and responsive. The software is more or less the same with some improvements in the X-Mode to tune gameplay and battery charging flexibility. However, one thing that stood out was the AeroActive Cooler 5 accessory. In addition to helping dissipate the heat from the phone, the accessory now comes with two physical triggers that sit naturally when you’re holding the phone horizontally or you can use it as a kickstand.