The ROG Phone 8 Pro is part of Asus' gaming-focused sub-brand, but this phone aims to attract a wider audience than previous models. And it partly succeeds. The Asus ROG Phone 8 Pro stands out. The Asus ROG gaming phones usually have a unique style that appeals mainly to gamers. However, this year's ROG Phone 8 series looks surprisingly mainstream.

I spent a month with the Asus ROG 8, testing its performance with hours of gaming. But since it’s also a phone for calls and internet browsing, I checked how it works as an everyday phone too.

Can it be both a great gaming device and a reliable mobile phone? Read on for my thoughts on the design, performance, and more of the Asus ROG 8 phone.


Price and Specifications

I reviewed the ROG Phone 8 Pro Edition, which costs ₹1,19,999. It features the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset, 24GB RAM, 1TB internal storage, a 6.78-inch AMOLED display with a 165Hz refresh rate, and a powerful 5500mAh battery. On paper, the device is impressive.


Design (Score: 8/10)

To appeal to a broader market, the ROG Phone 8 Pro Edition is much slimmer than its predecessors. It measures 8.9 mm thick, which is surprising given its high-end specs. It weighs 225 g, making it lighter than the previous model (Asus ROG Phone 7 Review). The device stands out from other Android phones, which often look and feel similar.

The ROG Phone 8 Pro Edition has a matte black finish and retains the familiar ROG design style. It has a sturdy aluminium frame and Gorilla Glass on the front and back, with an IP68 rating for water resistance. There’s an animating mini-LED display on the back that can be customized to light up for music, charging, notifications, and more.

Features such as the ergonomic side-charging design, RGB light strip, AirTrigger technology, and improved dual stereo speakers will be loved by ROG fans.

Two standout features are the AirTriggers and the two well-placed USB-C charge ports. One port is for regular charging, while the other is useful when you need to charge while gaming. The second USB-C port also connects to a Backbone controller for gaming. This is a smart design choice that more companies should consider for their phones.


Display (Score: 9/10)

The Asus ROG Phone 8 Pro Edition features a 6.78-inch FHD+ AMOLED display with a 165Hz refresh rate and a peak brightness of 2500 nits. Users can switch between 60Hz, 120Hz, and 165Hz refresh rates, or use Auto mode to let the device adjust automatically. The LTPO panel enables the screen to switch between 1Hz and 120Hz depending on the task, with the 165Hz mode functioning as a ‘locked’ mode for consistent performance. Scrolling through social media feeds is exceptionally smooth thanks to the high refresh rate.

With a resolution of 1080 x 2400 pixels (~388 ppi density), the screen is sharp and vibrant, offering excellent saturation for added visual impact. Users can choose from several screen colour options, including Optimal, Natural, Cinematic, Standard, and Customized. The screen is bright and easily visible outdoors.

Watching locally stored clips and YouTube videos is enjoyable due to the high-quality display, which delivers deep blacks and rich colours. The display is also very colour-accurate and natural-looking, especially in Normal mode rather than the default Optimal setting.

The LTPO panel allows the display to scale from 1Hz to 120Hz during regular use, enhancing energy efficiency for non-gaming tasks. When gaming, the display can ramp up to 165Hz. While few games exceed 120Hz, the ROG Phone 8 Pro is ready for those that do.


Performance (Score: 10/10)

As impressive as the new look of the Asus ROG Phone 8 Pro is, the real focus is on its performance. The phone is packed with top-tier specs, starting with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset, which is set to be the leading chip for 2024. This is paired with up to 24GB of LPDDR5X RAM in the Pro Edition. While this amount of RAM might seem excessive, it makes sense for a high-end gaming phone.

The device can handle the most demanding games at the highest settings, running titles like Genshin Impact and COD: Mobile smoothly.

A standout feature is the innovative pressure-sensitive triggers that provide tactile feedback, mimicking physical buttons and giving a competitive edge in gaming. Additional features like gyroscope controls, gesture inputs, and macro support for automating game tasks further enhance the gaming experience. The separate cooler with customizable buttons adds to the convenience. Asus’s X-Mode performance optimization, advanced cooling mechanisms, and customizable refresh rate settings via Armoury Crate ensure smooth gameplay.

Both casual users and power users will appreciate the phone’s fluid performance. It offers consistent, reliable performance with no screen freezes, unexpected app crashes, or device restarts. Everyday tasks like scrolling through social media feeds, browsing the web, watching YouTube, and photo editing are extremely pleasant thanks to the powerful hardware. This makes the ROG Phone 8 Pro a standout choice for hardcore mobile gaming enthusiasts.


Camera (Score: 7.5/10)

The ROG Phone 8 Pro features a triple camera setup on the back, consisting of a 50MP main sensor, a 32MP telephoto lens, and a 13MP ultrawide lens. The 32MP front camera delivers decent selfies.

The camera is likely the only area where the ROG Phone 8 Pro falls short of its competition, which is understandable. For years, smartphones have focused heavily on their cameras as a unique selling point, especially flagship models boasting features like 100X zoom, 200MP sensors, 1-inch sensors, advanced image processing engines, and AI tools like Magic Eraser for post-photo editing. This isn't the primary focus for the ROG Phone 8 Pro, yet its camera still performs reasonably well.

The camera gets the job done effectively. For creators looking to record videos or take photos, it will certainly suffice, though it may not be suitable for long-term, high-quality needs. Over time, you might find the quality lacking compared to dedicated cameras. However, for those just starting out who don’t want to invest heavily, it serves as a good all-in-one solution.

If the camera isn't your main concern and you just want to capture moments like your pet, a sunset, or a night out with friends, the ROG Phone 8 Pro won't disappoint.


Battery and Charging (Score: 8.5/10)

To achieve a sleeker design, Asus has made the somewhat concerning decision to reduce the ROG Phone 8 Pro’s battery size. While the ROG Phone 7 featured a 6,000mAh battery, the new model comes with a 5,500mAh cell.

Though improvements in chip and display efficiency help mitigate this reduction, Asus acknowledges a slight decrease in battery life compared to the previous model. This is not ideal for a gaming phone, where the goal is usually "higher, further, faster." During a full day of moderate use, with about four hours of screen-on time, I typically ended the day with just under 50% battery remaining.

When not gaming, the ROG Phone 8 Pro's 5,500mAh battery can easily last a day or more on a full charge. It charges from 0 to 100% in about 40 minutes using the included 65W charger. The phone also supports up to 15W wireless charging.

For gaming sessions, it's best to keep the phone plugged in. ASUS thoughtfully includes two charging ports—one on the bottom and one on the left side, which is convenient for gaming as it allows you to hold the phone naturally without the cable getting in the way. This feature has been a staple in the ROG Phone lineup.

The left-side port is also used to connect the AeroActive Cooler X via USB Type-C. The cooler itself has a charging port, allowing you to cool and charge the device simultaneously.


Final Words: A Value Pick for a Gaming Phone

If I had to describe the Asus ROG 8, I’d call it a value pick for a gaming phone. It strikes the right balance between price and gaming performance. While the design might seem a bit gimmicky, you can easily turn off the RGB lights to give it a more standard look, similar to other devices on the market.

Would I swap my iPhone 15 Pro for the ROG 8? No, because of camera quality, display, Apple Ecosystem and more are important to me rather than gaming. However, gamers aren’t concerned with taking notes—they’re focused on beating levels and defeating enemies. For those purposes, the ROG 8 is a perfect fit.