We’re really lucky to be invited to our local media briefing of the ASUS ROG Phone. This highly-anticipated smartphone was first experienced back at Computex 2018 and since then, ASUS did quite a lot of fine-tuning and polishing to the ROG Phone. After 4 months, we now have the ROG Phone on our hands once again. There’s now a USB-C dock and an official ROG Phone case too.
But – we’re looking at its history this time around. Interestingly, ASUS Malaysia brought in a lot of the prototype designs of the ROG Phone and walked us through the stages and iterations that it went through. Here’s a video briefly showing what was shown in the media briefing.
First, let’s take a look at the design of the ROG Phone. We were told that there were many different types of design that the team pitched – but only 4 of those designs got shortlisted. These 4 designs have distinct inspirations – the first one is a humanoid robot look, second one is inspired by a stealth aircraft, the third one has a tactical knife look, and the 4th design has a super car design.
We were shown the actual mockups of the designs. Ultimately, ASUS ROG chose the tactical knife design and went forward with it. I personally like the stealth aircraft design too, actually.
Remember that the ROG Phone is the first and only smartphone to be using a speed-binned Snapdragon 845 chipset? It’s clocked at 2.96GHz – nearly 200MHz above the official specs for the Snapdragon 845. With such power, the ROG Phone will need a proper cooling system – and ROG also showed us the different iterations of the cooling design that they implemented to the tactical knife design.
Firstly, the ROG Phone has some cooling modules inside. There’s a carbon cooling pad (essentially it’s something like a thermal pad) and copper heatspreaders, a 3D vapor chamber, and more carbon cooling pad. Then, they have a “lift cooling structure” which explains the piece of metal below the ROG logo at the back of the phone. This is actually a heatsink.
This “lift cooling structure” is now called the “ultra thin cooling pad”. ASUS went with a few different materials – from steel to aluminium and eventually, settled down for nickel. One big reason why nickel was chosen is because of the black color – which matches the ROG look nicely.
We also got to look at the internal metal frame of the ROG Phone. It’s milled out of a block of metal with CNC, which explains why the ROG Phone is priced this high. CNC takes time and in the manufacturing industry, time is money.
We were also shown the full accessories set that comes in a hard shell luggage case. This is a surprisingly good luggage case by the way, thanks to its quadruple wheels and a really good handle too. Also, it comes with a TSA-accepted lock.
Opening up the case we can see the full range of accessories packed inside the case that is filled with foam. You obviously get the ROG Phone, the WiGig Display Dock, the Mobile Desktop Dock, and also the TwinView Dock.
You’ll also get the GameVice, the official ROG Phone case, and also an ASUS Professional Dock. The ASUS Professional Dock is essentially a MacBook Pro dock, by the way.
The only thing that remains now is the launch date and price of the ROG Phone. From what we know, the ASUS ROG Phone will be launching this 22nd October – that’s not too far from now. As for the price, we do not have any solid confirmation yet.
My fingers and toes are crossed hoping that it’ll be <RM2.5k for the phone alone.