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The new Razer Phone 2 tries again to make the 120Hz gamer phone a thing

The 120Hz display is still the main draw.

Razer’s brand new gaming phone costs just as much as the Pixel 3

Things are moving fast in the Android world this month. Just a few days ago, Google unveiled the Pixel 3 phones, practically confirming every rumor that we heard in the past few months. There were very few surprises in store for the Pixel 3, which is now Google’s most expensive phone ever, starting at $799. For the same price, you could buy the Razer Phone 2 instead, Razer’s brand new gaming phone.

We knew the new Razer Phone was coming, as Razer confirmed as much a few weeks ago when it revealed the original gaming phone was a huge success for the company. 
Is it a better choice than the Pixel 3? Yes, if you’re looking for beefed up specs and a screen that’s unlike anything available on smartphones. No, if all you want is a top camera and fast Android updates.

The highlight of Razer Phone 2 is the 5.72-inch IGZO LCD with 2560 x 1440 resolution, 120Hz refresh rate, wide color gamut, UltraMotion technology and Corning Gorilla Glass 5. The phone, however, doesn’t have the all-screen design you expect from 2018 handsets, featuring top and bottom bezels. Like the Pixel 3, those bezels house speakers, which come with Dolby Atmos support.

On the back, there’s an RBG Illuminated Razer Chroma Logo, just as rumors said. Also on the back, we have two 12-megapixel cameras, including a telephoto lens and a wide-angle lens with optical image stabilization. On the front, there’s an 8-megapixel shooter.

The same Snapdragon 845 that powers the Pixel 3 is found inside the Razer Phone 2, but it bundled with twice the memory — the phone has 8GB of RAM compared to 4GB for the Pixel. Also, it features a Vapor Chamber cooling system. The base model comes with 64GB of UFS storage and does feature support for microSD storage expansion.

Other specs include 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 5.0, LTE Cat18 support (up to 1.2Gbit/s), 4,000mAh battery with Qualcomm QuickCharge 4.0+ and wireless charging, and IP67 water and dust resistance rating.

Unlike the Pixel 3 which comes out with Pie on board, the new Razer Phone runs Android 8.1 Oreo out of the box.

The phone will be available in two shades of black, including Mirror Black and Satin Black, and it will ship in the fourth quarter in the US, Europe, and Asia-Pacific, with preorders set for October 11th. The Pixel 3, meanwhile, will reach buyers on October 17th.

Accessories include the Razer Raiju controller, priced at $149.99, and the Razer Hammerhead USB-C earphones, priced at $99.99. Both of them will also launch worldwide in the fourth quarter.

This is our best look yet at Razer’s new gaming phone

Razer last year released its first Android handset, the simply-named Phone, which was sold as a gaming smartphone. The Phone did so well that Razer decided to make a sequel, which is going to be unveiled next month. But, thanks to a trustworthy source, we already have press renders of the Razer Phone 2 for you.

The handset looks very familiar to anyone who’s ever seen the first generation, although there are some clear differences.

As you can see in the image below, posted on Twitter by Even Blass, the phone still has enormous top and bottom bezels.

https://twitter.com/evleaks/status/1045535259415244800

Things changed on the back of the phone, where the dual-lens camera was shifted to a central position, right above the Razer logo. Also, the LED flash not sits between the two cameras.

One other notable modification concerns the Razer logo. The same Blass confirmed in a reply on Twitter that the logo does light up, as it appears to be the case in the image above. We heard before that Razer would bring its Chroma trickery to the next phone, which happens to be an iconic lighting feature on other Razer gaming products.

The leak doesn’t reveal any other details about the handset, but we expect the phone to pack the same high-end specs we’re used to seeing from flagships. That means up to 8GB of RAM and a Snapdragon 845 processor, which is exactly what other leaks said a few weeks ago.

Razer will reveal everything about the handset, including prices and availability dates, on October 10th.

On sale for $400, the Razer Phone isn’t a gaming phone any more – it’s just a great deal

Late last year, renowned illuminator of gaming peripherals (and builder of great laptops) Razer released its first phone. At the time, the concept of buying a phone specifically for gaming was still a joke, but it turns out that Razer was ahead of the rest of us. The explosion of Fortnite into a billion-dollar game this year has settled any debates about whether mobile gaming is “real” gaming, and the smartphone industry — which has seen its sales stagnate recently — have hired a moving van to get on board the bandwagon.

Razer is already working on a Razer Phone 2, but the original is still a stellar device. It has specs that can still compete with the best: 8GB of RAM, 5.7-inch display, and a 4,000mAh battery. The only knock is that it uses the Snapdragon 835 processor, which has recently been overtaken by the Snapdragon 845. The star of the show, however, remains the 120Hz screen, which boasts a higher refresh rate than other smartphones for better graphics and — you knew this was coming — more accurate gaming.

From our review last November:

The real star of the show here is the display, which isn’t just extremely sharp and crystal clear, but also has a trick up its sleeve that gamers will adore: a 120 Hz refresh rate. The Razer Phone’s “UltraMotion” screen is a real treat whether you’re browsing the web or playing games. It’s incredibly smooth — and if you’ve ever played with a new iPad Pro, you know what I’m talking about — and makes even something as simple as catching a creature in Pokemon Go feel like an entirely new experience. The phone also dynamically adjusts its refresh rate based on what you’re doing, so it doesn’t burn through precious battery life if you’re not doing something that would benefit from the added smoothness.

Anyway, it’s on sale today for $399 directly from Razer. Normally, smartphone half-off deals or buy-one-get-ones require adding a line, buying insurance, or selling one or more organs in the promise of distant bill credits. In this case, there’s zero terms and conditions — you just enter the code WOOHOO at checkout, and the $699 pricetag turns into $399.

Leaked Razer Phone 2 benchmarks suggest it might beat the Galaxy Note 9

Late last year, Razer released its first smartphone, the creatively-named Razer Phone. Everyone was a little skeptical that a company best known for making headsets and keyboards could take on Samsung, but as it turned out, the gaming-focused Razer Phone is exactly what the new generation of Fortnite addicts needed. The phone was a hit, and just a few days ago, Razer announced in an earnings call that it’s working on a follow-up.

From Razer’s statement, we didn’t get any clues about what the Razer Phone 2 (hey, it’s better than iPhone XS Max!) would look like, but thanks to a supposed benchmark on AnTuTu, we now have a good idea about what might be inside.

AnTuTu says that when searching through its benchmark data, it found one test for which “background data shows that this machine is a new model of the Razer Phone 2.” The specs sheet shows a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor with Adreno 630 graphics, 8GB of RAM, 512GB ROM, and Android 8.1. Those specs are precisely what we’d expect from a flagship smartphone launching in 2018, particularly one that’s focused on gaming. The Snapdragon 845 is the standard processor for any high-end Android phone, and 8GB of RAM is on the upper end, although rapidly becoming normal for expensive new phones.

According to AnTuTu, the Razer Phone 2 also “inherits the previous generation of Sharp IGZO screen with a resolution of 2560×1440p, supports Qualcomm Q-Synce display technology, and the screen refresh rate can be as high as 120Hz, which ensures that the player can make the touch screen operation smoother during the mobile game. Fast, in short, allows game action feedback to keep up with your hand speed, fully embodying player technology. However, it is temporarily unknown whether the Razer Phone 2 will adopt the “Liu Haiping” or “Water Drop Screen” design.” 

The screen was the selling point on the original Razer phone. From our review:

The real star of the show here is the display, which isn’t just extremely sharp and crystal clear, but also has a trick up its sleeve that gamers will adore: a 120 Hz refresh rate. The Razer Phone’s “UltraMotion” screen is a real treat whether you’re browsing the web or playing games. It’s incredibly smooth — and if you’ve ever played with a new iPad Pro, you know what I’m talking about — and makes even something as simple as catching a creature in Pokemon Go feel like an entirely new experience. The phone also dynamically adjusts its refresh rate based on what you’re doing, so it doesn’t burn through precious battery life if you’re not doing something that would benefit from the added smoothness.

The AnTuTu score was 283397, which puts it right near the top of AnTuTu’s leaderboard, right behind the Galaxy Note 9. It’s also beaten out by the Oppo Find X, Vivo Nex S, and Mi Black Shark. But considering that the Razer Phone 2 benchmarked is undoubtedly a pre-release version that hasn’t been fully optimized yet, that score still has room to go up.