Razer Phone: An Android smartphone for gamers, from a gaming company
Razer, a company that is very popular when it comes to making gaming laptops and peripherals, among other things, has launched a gaming smartphone. It is called the Razer Phone, and if we are to go by the specs, it truly could leave the current crop of Android flagship smartphones in its wake. This is the company’s first full-fledged foray into the smartphone space—and it comes after Razer acquired smartphone maker Nextbit earlier this year. It is no surprise then that the Razer Phone looks a lot like the Nextbit Robin cloud phone, albeit it’s a bit larger. The phone also has a bezel around the display, unlike the new crop of Android flagship phones which are focusing on reducing bezels.
It is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor, and has 8GB of RAM. Thus far, only the OnePlus 5 smartphone offers 8GB of RAM on its higher spec variant. Given that the phone is designed to run visually intensive games that will be demanding, lots of system memory is good for the future proofing aspect as well. It is perhaps a bit of a surprise that there is just 64GB internal storage (we would have expected 128GB, at the very least), but handily, there is a memory card slot too.
The display would perhaps be the highlight of the Razer Phone. This has a 5.7-inch LCD display, with the 2,560 x 1,440 resolution. This isn’t the widescreen aspect ratio like the Samsung Galaxy S8 or the Google Pixel 2, but the traditional 16:9 aspect ratio. This means games should fit perfectly on the screen and there will be no scaling issues. However, the highlight is the refresh rate. While most smartphone screens run at 60Hz, the Razer Phone’s display is capable of the ultra-fast 120Hz refresh rate. Razer calls this Ultramotion, and this should mean that animations as well as fast moving visuals you see while gaming will look smoother than any other phone display just yet.
The only other devices to have this fast motion rate option are the Apple iPad Pro 12.9 and the Apple iPad Pro 10.5, which automatically increase the refresh rate to 120Hz when a fast-moving visual is detected on the display—this bump up is temporary for the duration the visuals on screen require it, so as to not drain the battery extensively. It will be interesting to see how Razer has implemented this feature, and how that impacts battery life.
Razer has packed in a 4000mAh battery into the Razer Phone, and becomes the first phone to support Qualcomm’s QuickCharge 4.0+ charging standard.
The phone will run Android 7.1 (Nougat) out of the box, though it wouldn’t be outlandish to expect the Android 8.0 (Oreo) update sometime in the next few weeks.
Razer Phone is priced at $699 (around Rs45,000) and will release in the US and Europe on 17 November. There is no word yet on if and when the Razer Phone will be released in other countries.