Last year, we had the opportunity to look inside the ROG Phone during the local briefing session. It was eye-opening to see the amount of engineering that went into the overall design, marrying both the functionality and form into a single, beautiful and powerful smartphone. This year, ASUS Malaysia organized a briefing for the ROG Phone 2, and laid out all the guts of the phone for us to see.
Special thanks to ASUS Malaysia for the setup of the ROG Phone 2 briefing and for the invite as well!
Before we begin, we have to highlight this infographic that we got from ASUS Malaysia. We’re getting the one on the left, which has a lot more stuff in the box and in the phone itself.
This time around, ASUS only highlighted the upgrades from the previous generation. If you’d like to know about the history of the design of ROG Phone, click here. There are a total of 4 different new upgrades which were deemed significant:
- AirTriggers II – faster and have better tactile feedback and can now rest your fingers on the triggers themselves, like a gamepad controller.
- Dual surrounding vibration – Vibrates in both x- and z-axes, giving a sense of 3D vibration.
- Multi-antenna design – no more “you’re holding it wrong” meme since your hands will never block the antenna.
- GameCool II – Better cooling solution overall for prolonged gaming hours at high performance.
The phone itself is still pretty much the same in terms of the essence of the design. Still having a glass sandwich, still is heavy, and also still using the katana design (learn more here) from last year.
What was changed significantly here, are the accessories. For the ROG Phone II, you have:
- New accessories
- Aero case
- AeroActive Cooler II
- ROG Phone II Lighting Armor
- TwinView Dock II
- ROG Kunai Gamepad
- From the previous generation
- Mobile Desktop Dock
- WiGig Display Dock Plus
- Pro Dock
Lots of accessories once again – but allow us to explain a little further. The Aero case is included in the box itself for us Malaysians. So if you are buying the Malaysian version with a six-prism box, you’ll get this… jarring bikini-like phone case for the ROG Phone 2.
There’s a reason why ASUS made the case to be bikini-like too. Firstly, for cooling. The openings allow the phone to breath better. The cutout on the ROG logo at the back of the phone allows the RGB to shine through (obviously) and also for the AeroActive Cooler II to snap on it. That’s a huge improvement over the first generation.
The new ROG Phone II Lighting Armor is just a full case for the phone but with RGB lighting.
ASUS also has the new TwinView Dock II to show. The second display is also now using a 120Hz AMOLED display – same as the one on the phone – and has a new mounting mechanism with both sides opened. That is because ASUS wants it to be compatible with future models of ROG Phone, hence the open sides.
Which brings us to the ROG Kunai Gamepad. If you’re familiar with the Nintendo Switch, then yes – this is similar in concept. You’ll have to use a special case for the ROG Phone 2 that allows the Kunai gamepad controllers to slot at the sides. However, you cannot use the Kunai gamepads wirelessly and individually.
You’ll also get a
Joy-Con grip Kunai gamepad grip to hold it like a traditional gamepad controller. You can use the Kunai gamepad for other devices – like PC. It has a USB dongle at the bottom of the grip itself. Smart.
And yes – the Kunai gamepad grip comes with two more buttons around the ring and pinky finger resting area.
You can also mix and match accessories here. Combining the TwinViewDock with the ROG Kunai Gamepad, you get this lovely handheld gaming setup, but it’s a bit too heavy.
Like its predecessor, you can buy the ROG Phone 2 with all of its accessories packed into one hard-shell briefcase. Yeah, all the accessories are in there.
As of now, we still do not have the pricing or availability of the ASUS ROG Phone 2 or its accessories yet. What we know is that there will be a local launch event happening on 16th October 2019.
We’ll update you when we have more information. Stay tuned!