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Miss microSD slots and headphone jacks? These new flagships are for you.

The Aquos R8 Pro also offers a one-inch main camera and the best in-display fingerprint sensor in the business.

Published onMay 9, 2023

Sharp Aquos R8 Pro screen
  • Sharp has launched the Aquos R8 and R8 Pro flagship phones.
  • The two phones pack water-resistant designs, a microSD card slot, and a 3.5mm port.
  • These phones will likely be restricted to Japan, though.

Japanese manufacturer Sharp launches Aquos flagship phones every year, bringing interesting display tech, cool camera hardware, and plenty more features to the table.

Now, the company has launched the Sharp Aquos R8 and R8 Pro (h/t: Redditor welp_im_damned). The two phones share features like a Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor, water-resistant designs, and lengthy software update pledges (three major OS updates and five years of security patches).

However, both of the phones pack a microSD card slot and a 3.5mm port as well. This makes Sharp one of the only brands aside from Sony to offer microSD card support and/or a headphone jack on their flagship phones.

Aquos R8 Pro: Cutting-edge tech for the most part

Sharp Aquos R8 Pro docomo resize

The Aquos R8 Pro otherwise earns its Pro moniker by virtue of its 6.6-inch 240Hz IGZO OLED screen (1,260 x 2,730, 2,000 nits peak brightness), a 5,000mAh battery, 12GB of RAM, 256GB of expandable storage, and that excellent Qualcomm 3D Sonic Max in-display fingerprint scanner.

As for photography, Sharp’s Pro phone brings a Leica-branded 47MP one-inch main camera paired with a 2MP depth sensor and a color spectrum sensor for more accurate color capture. This is mostly in line with last year’s phone. However, we’re still disappointed that the phone doesn’t offer an ultrawide or telephoto rear camera. Otherwise, a 12.6MP selfie camera is available in a punch-hole cutout.

In a neat touch, Sharp is also selling a case that allows you to attach lens filters to the phone’s main camera. So those wanting to use an ND filter on their phone can opt for this accessory.

Sharp Aquos R8 Pro: Hot or not?

505 votes

Meanwhile, the standard Sharp Aquos R8 brings a 6.39-inch IGZO OLED screen (FHD+, 1,300 nits peak brightness), a 4,570mAh battery, 8GB of RAM, 256GB of expandable storage, and a more conventional side fingerprint scanner.

Sharp’s standard Aquos model also brings a 50MP+13MP rear camera system (main and ultrawide). Don’t expect a one-inch main sensor here, as this is a smaller 1/1.55-inch sensor broadly in line with sensors like the IMX766 series. An 8MP selfie camera is situated in a waterdrop notch. Yep, we’ve somehow got a Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 phone with a display notch.

Sharp Aquos R8 series availability and price

Sharp Aquos R8 docomo resized

The Japanese company hasn’t dished out pricing for these new handsets, but the Aquos R7 retailed for ~$1,467. So expect a similar price tag for the Sharp Aquos R8 Pro when it goes on sale from July 15.

Sharp’s flagship phones are traditionally restricted to Japan, so you’ll likely need to import this one if you really want it. Still, we’re glad to see another high-end phone with a 3.5mm port and microSD card slot.

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