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ASUS ROG Phone 8 announced: A gaming phone that doesn't look like one
- ASUS has launched the ROG Phone 8 smartphone, and it’s a significant change from previous models.
- The phone drops a cooling vent and stereotypical gaming phone aesthetic in favor of a slimmer design and IP68 rating.
- Expect the phone to have a recommended price of $1,099.99, with a pre-order offer of $999.99.
The ASUS ROG Phone series was one of the first modern gaming phone lines, bringing a ton of power, improved cooling, and gaming-specific features. Now, the company has revealed the ROG Phone 8, and it’s a departure of sorts from previous devices.
The ROG Phone 8 attempts to offer a more mainstream flagship experience. You’ve still got capacitive shoulder triggers, but the company has ditched the cooling vent and stereotypical gaming phone aesthetic seen on previous devices.
|ASUS ROG Phone 8
6.78-inch Dynamic AMOLED
FHD+ resolution (2,400 x 1,080)
165Hz refresh rate (1-120Hz LTPO)
Snapdragon 8 Gen 3
No microSD card support
65W wired charging
15W wireless charging
Charger in box
- 50MP wide main sensor (f/1.9, 1/1,56-inch sensor, PDAF, 6-axis hybrid gimbal stabilization)
- 13MP ultrawide (f/2.2)
- 32MP 3x telephoto (f/2.4, 0.7-micron pixel size)
- 32MP wide
ROG UI / Zen UI
2 Android updates
4 years of security updates
In-display fingerprint scanner
163.8 x 76.8 x 8.9 mm
Dark Grey (standard variant only)
Instead, ASUS has opted for a slightly slimmer design that’s more in line with a conventional smartphone. The company is also bringing an IP68 design to the series for the first time (hence no cooling vent), so your phone should survive a drop in the pool. Toss in wireless charging support and it’s clear that ASUS seems to be targeting the general flagship audience rather than die-hard mobile gamers.
That’s not to say that the handset doesn’t bring some gaming-adjacent features, though. Aside from the capacitive triggers, you’ve got an improved cooling system, an RGB logo on the back, and support for the optional AeroActive Cooler X fan.
A flagship-tier camera system
ROG Phones have long lagged behind the best flagship phones when it comes to the camera experience, but the ROG Phone 8 represents the Taiwanese brand’s most ambitious effort yet. The biggest addition this time is a 32MP 3x telephoto camera, marking the first time we see a tele lens on a ROG Phone handset. ASUS is also promising 10x “Hyper Clarity Zoom” and up to 30x digital zoom.
The ROG Phone 8 also brings a 50MP IMX890 main camera with the Zenfone line’s gimbal stabilization tech, as well as a 13MP ultrawide camera with a free-form lens for reduced distortion. A 32MP camera is available up-front for selfies, bringing a wider, 90-degree field-of-view.
ASUS ROG Phone 8: The core specs
The basic specs are suitably high-end in 2024. Expect a Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset with an improved cooling system, a 5,500mAh battery (down from 6,000mAh last year), and a 6.78-inch FHD+ 165Hz OLED screen (2,500 nits peak brightness, 1,600 nits HBM).
ASUS is also offering loads of software features, such as full-fledged Microsoft Phone Link support (e.g. cross-device copy/paste, app streaming), Snapdragon Seamless support with future X Elite laptops, and Dirac Virtuo spatial audio support.
ASUS ROG Phone 8: Hot or not?
ASUS is no stranger to branding everything as “AI,” and the company is upping the ante with the ROG Phone 8. Expect features like AI noise cancelation, AI Semantic Search for more flexible system search capabilities, AI-generated wallpapers (via an update, working locally), and several AI-based gaming features. One of the latter features includes the ability to identify and copy text from a game’s screenshot (e.g. quest details) so you can quickly search for relevant tips.
Other features worth knowing include a 3.5mm port, Bluetooth 5.3 support, Wi-Fi 7-ready support, and a second, side-mounted USB-C port. Unfortunately, ASUS confirmed that the handset lacks eSIM support. That’s a real shame as eSIM has been a fixture on rival devices for a few years now.
ASUS ROG Phone 8 pricing and availability
The Taiwanese brand confirmed that the ROG Phone 8 will be available in the US and UK. In saying so, previous ROG Phones were also available in Europe and Asia, so we’re expecting the same availability for the new phone.
The ROG Phone 8 has a recommended price of $1,099.99 for the base 12GB/256GB model in the US. However, the phone has a pre-order price of $999.99.
Want more storage and/or RAM? Then the ROG Phone 8 Pro is a 16GB/512GB model for $1,199.99. Finally, the ROG Phone 8 Pro Edition brings 24GB of RAM, 1TB of storage, and an included AeroActive Cooler X fan.
The phone will be available in the UK at a starting price of £949.99 for the 12GB/256GB variant. Need more RAM and storage? Then the 16GB/512GB Pro model will set you back £1,099.99. Finally, the 24GB/1TB top-tier model will cost £1,299.99.