ROG Phone 3
Finally Asus has announced the 3rd generation of their Flagship gaming device, named the Asus ROG Phone 3, 1 year after the launch of the fastest gaming smartphone of 2019. Even though there were already a ton of leaks regarding the design and specifications of the device, everything is clear now that the official announcement from the company about this game changer is done. We will now proceed to list and describe the specifications and what’s new.
The ROG Phone 3 comes in glass sandwich design, with half of the back transparent, with an aluminium frame holding it all together. Both the front and back glasses are Corning Gorilla Glass so they should definitely provide some protection against scratches and scuffs. There also are customizable Air triggers for improved experience. The design of the phone will appease gamers with the customizable RGB lighting and the overall look and feel, this is certainly not your everyday minimalist design afterall.
However, the overall package is quite substantial in size. The dimensions of 171 x 78 x 9.85 mm make it substantially bigger than the likes of Iphone 11 Pro Max, S20 Ultra and even taller than the Galaxy Note 10+. With the size of phones increasing every year, the con with the ROG Phone 3 is the thickness, coming in at 0.985 centimeters, this is a phone which you will definitely have to hold on tightly. We hope this tradeoff will be justified given the performance and sheer size of the battery.
As we know, all companies have now started drifting towards displays with High Refresh Rates, moving from 60Hz to 90Hz and now at a sweet 120Hz. But how does ROG Phone 3 manage to be differ from this? By providing an even higher refresh rate of 144Hz and a response time of 1ms, clearly targeting the gamers, because practically speaking, they are the only ones who will be able to notice this difference between 120Hz and 144Hz. The best part about this is that now there is support for 144Hz displays from 100+ games. Now that refresh rate is out of the way, we can talk about the resolution of the screen. Also the FPS consistency is said to be 99%. This phone comes with a 6.59 inch AMOLED screen with FHD+ resolution of 2340x1080p, giving it a ppi of 391, exactly the same as that of the ROG Phone 2.
With the latest snapdragon processors and the screen size, users could have appreciated a display with a better QHD resolution but again, the presence of 16-Bit HDR support and high refresh rate enhances the experience and the users will not be left with much to complain about. The touch sampling rate is 270Hz, faster than the 240 Hz rate of the S20 and the Oneplus 8 Pro, and the touch and slide latency are 25ms and 18ms respectively. The screen is also extremely color accurate with a DeltaE of less than 1, and also flicker reduction inbuilt. Even in 2020 this phone comes without a notch or a punch hole camera, not focusing much on a high screen to body ratio, thanks to the forward facing dual speakers which we will talk about later in the article.
This device packs the latest and greatest Snapdragon 865 Plus processor. This is a 3.1 GHz octa core 7nm processor based on the Qualcomm SM8250 platform. It comes with an Adreno 650 GPU. What does it translate into for the end user? Excellent performance and a snappy experience, a really smooth one thanks to the 144Hz display. For cooling this beast, Asus has used a multi layer cooling system, the heat sink is 6 times bigger than ROG 2 and is also clearly visible from the transparent back.
There is also a redesigned 3D Vapor chamber in the form of a graphite film for ample heat distribution and airflow. Such a cooling system should help with the extended gaming sessions which heat the phones up and that in turn affects the battery life of the device. All this is done to prevent thermal throttling of the device, which according to Asus’s claims never occurred, taking a jibe at thermals of Oneplus 8 Pro and S20 Ultra, which did throttle. The ram used in this phone is also not a slow one either. This comes with LPDDR5 Ram for 16GB Variant(51%faster than LPDDR4) and UFS 3.1 storage in the 512GB variant(15%faster than UFS 3.0). Thanks to the processor and the cooling system, this phone should handle about every task you throw at it, effortlessly. This phone will be available in the following 3 configurations for users to choose from-
|8GB+256GB(STRIX EDITION)||799 Euros|
This phone will be offered with a dual camera setup at the back, the main camera and an ultrawide camera. The primary camera is a 64MP f/1.8 IMX686 sensor with Optical Image Stabilization and supports video recording which is electronically stabilized. The ultrawide camera is a 13MP f/2.4 sensor. There is also a third Macro camera. The front camera is a 24MP unit. If we see the track record of previous ROG phones, there is a lot of scope of improvement in the camera department, especially the shutter lag and the image processing unit. Ultimately, this is a decent camera setup but again, most people will not buy this phone for photography, so this should not be a deal breaker at all. This was made evident by the fact that the presenter only talked about the camera for a very less amount of time.
Day by day we are progressing towards a high speed communication future. Fortunately this phone provides great future proofing by supporting 5G, the next big thing when it comes to wireless communication. The wifi card will support the latest wifi 6 standard which means a faster, and more reliable wifi connection, thanks to multiple bands of transmission. This also comes with the latest generation of Bluetooth i.e. Bluetooth 5.1, hence providing excellent connection with other smart devices. NFC is also present which will come in handy for making payments using google pay. Hence there are no shortcomings in the communication department, everything is of the latest generation.
In the past, ROG phones have known to have one of the best battery lives when compared to other flagships. This device is no different and is loaded with a massive 6000mAh battery which and a 30 Watt HyperCharge adapter is supplied within the box. The charging and interfacing with different computers is done using Type C. Unfortunately, still there is no wireless charging which is a bummer for a select few people, but at least Asus is including a fast charger in the box, unlike … Anyway, this phone should easily last 1.5-2 days of general-light use and even with heavy usage, the battery should certainly last one full day of gaming. The claimed Screen On Times are about 1.5 times that of the rivals, i.e. the Oneplus 8 Pro and S20 Ultra.
The speakers on this device do not follow a conventional design. Dual front firing stereo speakers, which are loud and crisp, which provides one of the best audio listening experience to the consumer at present, thanks to tuning by Dirac and presence of Crosstalk Cancellation Technology. However this does come at the expense of size and overall screen to body ratio. There is also a directional microphone.
Miscellaneous and Accessories
The device comes with dual Nano Sim and allows dual stand-by, but there is no option of expanding the storage by adding an SD Card. They do however provide a type C to 3.5mm converter. Still after 3 generations, there is no official IP Rating which means users will have to protect this from any kind of water damage. This phone comes preloaded with Android 10 and an ASUS skin on top of android, but there is an option for users to switch it to stock android skin as well which is brilliant. Talking about modes, it has the X Mode for the ultimate gaming experience, with full power unleashed. There are also options for setting up multiple game and hardware profiles, providing ample customization to the user.
For security, there is an under display Optical Fingerprint sensor as well. There are many game modes for configuring the performance depending on the games one is playing. ASUS has once again provided air triggers which can be mapped to execute specific tasks in game, mainly aiming and shooting for FPP and TPP games.
Kunai Gamepad 3
This gamepad can be used in 2 configurations, one where the user can attach the phone in between the controller and use it with the dual joysticks and buttons with the screen in the centre as a handheld device. Even with the Kunai Gamepad attached, you can still use the AeroActive Cooler attachment at the back of the phone. In the other mode they can use it as a standalone wireless controller where the phone need not be physically attached. This controller comes in matte black, as all things should be.
TwinView Dock 3
This time again we see the option to add a secondary screen to the phone via this accessory. This display is blessed with a 144Hz display to match the phone ,an additional battery and physical buttons for controlling and a 3.5mm jack for headset connection. There is also an option to attach the Kunai gamepad controllers to the side of this dual display setup and essentially have a completely immersive gaming experience with dual displays and physical controls.
This can be used to dock the phone and use it as a full fledged desktop, providing all the necessary ports for a desktop like I/O.
This 0 response lag wireless keyboard comes with a space saving design known as the innovative 65% Layout. This keyboard has a touch panel attached to the left side of the keyboard with smart battery level indication and volume adjustment functionality. This has a claimed 400 Hour Battery life as well. This is equipped with Cherry MX RGB switches. The RGB control is handled by Wireless Aura Sync.
ROG CETRA RGB
This time ROG has provided USB Type-C In-Ear Gaming Headphones with large 10mm ASUS Essence Drivers, active noise cancellation(with ambient mode as well) and customizable AURA RGB Lighting(of-course).
ROG STRIX XG16
This is a Full HD 15.6 inch 144Hz IPS panel for the ROG 3, connected via a USB Type-C or Micro HDMI connectivity. It has a 7800mAh built in battery, which can also be used to charge the phone. This can be docked via a tripod stand or a kick stand.
This accessory is used to connect the phone with an external control like the Xbox controller or a Stadia Controller.
AeroActive Cooler 3
This is an active air cooling system which directs the airflow towards the air vent on the ROG Phone 3. It also comes with a 3.5mm jack and RGB lighting for itself, because why not? The fans spin at 40% higher RPM, helping it cool the surface by 4 degree Celsius. This comes with a brand new kickstand design as well.
Lighting Armor Case
Lastly this is a full on armor style ROG themed case for the ROG Phone 3. It has cut-outs for the air vents on the back of the phone and has customizable RGB lighting at the rear. However this case increases the overall thickness of the device, which is already very bulky.
On paper this is a fantastic phone, with the best possible specifications and at this price point, we can confidently recommend this phone. But it is targeted at a very specific type of people – streamers and competitive gamers, all thanks to the design of the phone, which is completely different from all other flagships, akin to gaming laptops. However with such specs, this phone will easily crush anything you throw at it and hence can be used for many purposes. Looking at the pricing, its main rivals are Oneplus 8, 8 Pro and S20 and thanks to the price this phone is an easy recommendation, granted you like the design.
P.S. Also read our article on OnePlus AR Event details: Nord, OnePlus Buds, Nord and Buds Cost. If you already haven’t.