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ROG Phone VS ROG Phone 2: What’s Changed?

There are plenty of changes under the hood

ASUS has officially announced their second-generation ROG Phone, dubbed the ROG Phone 2, and there’s quite a bit to take in. We’ve written a comprehensive first look at the new phone, but if you want to see what’s changed between the two devices, you’ve come to the right place.

There is quite a bit of change between the two generations, with many of the changes on the inside. Let’s take a look at how the OG ROG Phone stacks up with the new one:

ROG Phone 2 Specs

  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 Plus processor
  • Adreno 640 GPU
  • 12GB of LPDDR4x RAM
  • 6.59-inch 120Hz refresh rate/1ms AMOLED panel with 240Hz touch sampling rate, full HD+ resolution, 108% DCI-P3, Corning Gorilla Glass 6, 10-bit HDR (2340 x 1080)
  • Up to 512GB of UFS3.0 storage
  • 48-megapixel Sony IMX586 sensor with an f/1.79 aperture lens, 13-megapixel wide-angle┬ásecondary camera
  • 24-megapixel front camera
  • Dual SIM
  • 3G, LTE
  • WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, A-GPS, under-display fingerprint sensor
  • 6000mAh battery
  • Two USB Type C ports
  • Fast charging up to 30W using supplied charger and regular USB Type-C cable
  • Android 9 Pie

ASUS ROG Phone Specs

  • Speed-binned 2.93Ghz Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor
  • Adreno 630 GPU
  • 8GB RAM
  • 128GB/512GB internal storage
  • 6-inch Full HD+AMOLED display with 90hz refresh rate and 1ms response time, HDR support
  • 12-megapixel main and 8-megapixel wide-angle rear cameras
  • 8-megapixel front camera
  • 4G, LTE
  • Dual SIM
  • WiFi, Bluetooth
  • GPS, A-GPS
  • USB Type-C
  • GameCool vapor-chamber cooling system, AirTrigger force-feedback haptics
  • Aura RGB lighting and AuraSync Support
  • Stereo speakers with smart amplifier and support for Hi-Res Audio, DTS:HeadphoneX, and aptX
  • 4000mAh battery with HyperCharge
  • Android 8.1 Oreo with ZenUI 5.0

Physically taller and more refined

The biggest change between the two phones is size: the ROG Phone 2 is physically taller to accommodate that bigger display, which means the new phone is a little harder to wrangle one-handed compared to the OG version.

The back of the ROG Phone 2 also looks cleaner and more refined, thanks to the removal of the fingerprint scanner. The side-mounted USB Type-C port for accessories is still present on the new phone, and like before you can still customize the color and pattern of the ROG logo on the back depending on what you want.

Faster display

Aside from being physically bigger, the ROG Phone 2’s display has a higher refresh rate than the original at 120Hz VS 90Hz. The response for the display is also higher at 1ms for the ROG Phone 2, making it on par with some of the brand’s desktop monitors.

The ROG Phone 2’s display is also more accurate, thanks to its 108% DCI-P3 color gamut, Delta E<1, 10-bit HDR and SDR2HDR support. As we mentioned earlier, the ROG Phone 2 also gets an under-display fingerprint scanner as well.

ROG Phone

Upgraded hardware make a difference

The ROG Phone 2 sports Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 855 Plus chipset, along with up to 12GB of LPDDR4X RAM, and storage options of up to 512GB of UFS 3.0 storage.


ROG Phone 2

That’s to be expected of course, but the internal tweaks don’t stop there. From our hands-on, there’s a definite improvement in the phone’s AirTrigger system compared to the OG model, and the software tweaks make the phone more responsive and more pleasurable to game on compared to the original.

The large battery has no peer

The ROG Phone 2 is built for long gaming sessions, thanks to its massive 6000mAh battery. While the original ROG Phone managed to deliver excellent battery life on its own, the 4000mAh battery in its glass frame is no match for the large 6000mAh battery on the second generation device.

A better lineup of accessories

The original ROG Phone launched with a couple of accessories like the ROG Phone 2, but you can clearly see the effort ASUS went through to fix the pain points that plagued earlier users of the phone.

ROG Phone

The Kunai gamepad system is better than the one in the previous generation, as it gives you better control overall and can be completely detached and used as a Bluetooth controller if need be. Even the TwinView Dock II feels better to use, since it’s lighter and can be used in conjunction with the Kunai.

Probably pricier

While we don’t know how much the ROG Phone 2 will be at launch, the phone definitely will be pricier this time around. Stuffing all that tech into a handheld isn’t cheap, so we expect the ROG Phone 2 to retail higher than the original device.

John Nieves

John is a veteran technology and gadget journalist with more than 10 years of experience both in print and online. When not writing about technology, he frequently gets lost in the boonies playing soldier.

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