Android may have already celebrated its 10th birthday, but the idea of an Android handset built specifically for gaming has only recently started to take hold. It's a relatively new market, and ASUS is planning to jump into feet first with its upcoming ROG Phone, which appears to be headed for an October 18 release the United States.
ASUS has already provided a bunch of details about its ROG Phone, a handset it's billing as a "game changer." However, it never said when the phone will come out or how much it will cost. Now it's seemingly answered one of the questions with a Twitter post pointing to a launch event in New York in a couple of weeks.
The ROG Phone will enter a growing market of gaming handsets led by the Razer Phone and upcoming Razer Phone 2, plus a spatter, and less prominently devices like the Xiaomi-backed Blackshark and ZTE's Nubia Red Magic. Compared to those devices, and especially Razer's products, the ROG Phone's 6-inch AMOLED display with a 90Hz refresh rate and 1ms response time doesn't deliver the same 'wow' factor, in terms of specs, but is better than most flagships on the market.
However, the ROG Phone has several other things going for it, such as HDR support and a vapor-chamber cooling system. Providing a heartbeat for the ROG Phone is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor, though ASUS is binning the chips and only selecting ones that can run at 2.96GHz, just a hair shy of 3GHz.
We also know the ROG Phone will wield up to 8GB of LPDDR4X RAM and up to 512GB of onboard storage, supplemented with 100GB of Google Drive space free for one year. And of course there are the front and rear cameras, dual front-facing speakers, and so forth.
What's more intriguing, though, are the unique features such as ultrasonic air triggers and advanced haptics. ASUS will also sell various accessories. One of them is a TwinView Dock for extending gameplay to a second, larger display and a handheld device that, when paired with the ROG Phone, offers a dual-screen experience.
There is a lot going on with the ROG Phone. We're looking forward to learning more details, and ultimately seeing if it can live up to the hype.