AH Reader's Choice Awards: Best Gaming Phone of 2023 – ASUS ROG Phone 7

ASUS nailed it with the ROG Phone 7 this year

Gaming phones are a smaller niche category when it comes to the smartphone market but there is a market for them and surprisingly, more options in that segment than you’d think. Unsurprisingly, ASUS continues to be the top contender and this year it outdid itself with the ROG Phone 7 and ROG Phone 7 Ultimate.

Best-in-class thermal management for long-lasting gaming performance, a large, high refresh rate display, and functional features like the AirTriggers, you name it. Whatever you’d like a gaming phone to have, the ROG Phone 7 probably has it. That isn’t to say it’s perfect. It still didn’t offer wireless charging and while the camera was better than in previous years, it could still use some improvement to bring it forward with other high-end devices in its price range.

As a phone overall though aside from those two factors, the ROG Phone 7 is downright impressive. And as purely a device for mobile gaming, the ROG Phone 7 excels with ease. One of the bigger pain points with older models like the ROG Phone 2 and ROG Phone 5 was the excessive heat dispersal during heavy gaming loads. When you’d boot up a game like Genshin Impact and play for 30 minutes to an hour, the phone would get uncomfortably warm. Not enough to burn you, but warm enough that you would probably want to put the phone down for a bit. The ROG Phone 7 didn’t have this issue.

Sure, it got warm. Especially if you were playing something demanding for more than a couple of hours. But I was able to comfortably hold the phone and play for long sessions. And that is a huge accomplishment.

Peak performance to ensure the best possible gaming experience

Lots of phones offer similar specs to what the ROG Phone 7 offers. But the hardware specs are only part of the picture. In addition to having a large storage capacity for all those games and everything else, the ROG Phone 7 has oodles of RAM. In addition to that it has a 165Hz refresh rate display and the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 processor. Those are all great specs. But it’s those things plus the unique ASUS features that push the ROG Phone 7 to the top for peak performance in mobile gaming.

The AirTriggers are simply superb for games like Call of Duty: Mobile, Call of Duty: Warzone Mobile, and The Division Resurgence. Another really awesome addition this year was the AeroActive Cooler 7. This time around it incorporated a Peltier cooling system that when attached to the phone, would open this little port on the back of it for more airflow. It also incorporated a small subwoofer to amplify the already great audio coming from the Dirac-tuned speakers.

Not to be forgotten was ASUS’s Armoury Crate app. Using this to manage all sorts of different stuff like the ROG Vision display and the different phone profiles was a breeze. Even better is the game genie, which you can use to manage refresh rate, do not disturb mode, AirTrigger configuration, and more.

Plus, it’s just designed in such a way that it’s more comfortable to hold than any other gaming phone I’ve ever used. ASUS has always nailed this part. And here’s to hoping it doesn’t stop. All of these reasons are why our readers have chosen the ROG Phone 7 for the Best Gaming Phone of 2023.