Asus wanted to build not just the best gaming phone, but also an overall flagship – the Asus ROG Phone 8 series has been redesigned to be more pleasant to use as a daily driver. There are three versions of the phone (four, actually), though the differences are mostly cosmetic.
The new ROG phone is thinner and lighter – it measures 8.9mm and weighs 225g, compared to 10.3mm and 239g for the ROG Phone 7. This comes with a drop in battery capacity to 5,500mAh (500mAh down), but optimized hardware offers nearly the same battery life as last year’s model.
The display measures 6.78” like last year, but the new panel has slimmer bezels, though this comes at the cost of moving to a punch hole camera (previously, the selfie cam was embedded in the top bezel). On the plus side, the new model is a lot smaller at 163.8mm tall and 76.8mm wide, compared to 173.0 x 77.0 for the old model.
The new display has a 165Hz refresh rate like before, however, it uses an LTPO panel so it can also switch to a variable refresh rate between 1Hz and 120Hz. Peak brightness has been increased to 2,500 nits.
Asus advertises the ROG Phone 8 as the first water resistant phone – it is rated IP68 (up from just IP54 on its predecessor). Gaming phones prioritize cooling, which means little to none waterproofing. The ROG Phone 7 Pro had an AeroActive Portal that enabled convective cooling, the 8-series uses conduction cooling instead.
This is done with a copper block that goes through the motherboard and touches the back panel. Here, heat is transferred to the air or better yet, to the new AeroActive Cooler X. It’s 29% smaller (by volume) and 10% lighter, so it’s easier to carry. As a cooler, it has a larger contact area (2.6x), runs the fan faster (1.1x) and has a higher thermal efficiency (1.2x), which adds up to much better cooling.
The chipset being cooled is the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3, of course. It can be configured with up to 24GB of LPDDR5X RAM and up to 1TB UFS 4.0. The base configuration is 12/256GB, the middle one is 16/512GB.
In its quest to make the ROG Phone 8 nicer to use throughout the day, Asus added 15W Qi charging, so you can top up at airports and bars without plugging in. If you do go with wired charging, the phone supports 65W HyperCharge and a 0-100% charge is done in 39 minutes.
The 50MP main camera (1/1.56” Sony IMX890 sensor) now features a 6-axis Hybrid Gimbal Stabilizer 3.0. Combined with new software it enables Super HyperSteady Video mode. There is also a 13MP 120° ultra wide camera.
New this generation is the 3x telephoto lens with a 32MP camera. It has OIS and 4-in-1 pixel binning (1.4µm pixels). Going beyond 3x, there is 10x Hyper Clarity AI zooming and up to 30x digital zoom. Super Night Mode is available for snapping photos in the dark. Note that in some regions the ROG Phone 8 will have a macro camera instead of tele. The ROG Phone 8 Pro and 8 Pro Edition models will have tele cameras in all markets.
The new front-facing camera has a 32MP sensor that is binned down to 8MP by default (1.4µm binning). It has a wider 90° lens (up from 73°), making it better at group shots.
Asus roped in AI to help you out in games. For example, in Genshin Impact and HK – Star Rail you can enable Auto Pick Up, Fast Forward, Running Lock and Auto press-to-escape.
If you get stuck on a puzzle, you can use the AI Grabber to automatically scan text on the display and pull up the relevant part of a walkthrough. AI can also be used to generate new wallpapers for the phone.
The 8-series has full support for Microsoft Phone Link. This includes app streaming and screen mirroring, you can also drag & drop files and copy & paste between the phone and your PC.
The Asus ROG Phone 8 is available in Phantom Black and Rebel Grey. It has an RGB backlit ROG logo on the back. The ROG Phone 8 Pro and Pro Edition are available only in Phantom Black and have a small OLED display on their backs.
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