Gaming

ZTE Nubia Red Magic hands-on: A stylish gaming phone

One look and you know it’s a gaming phone

Published

on

Not all smartphone manufacturers create a gaming phone. Technically, flagship smartphones with top specs are ideal for gaming but they lack the appeal and design. When Razer announced their own phone, it was true to its Razer branding but lacked the RGB lighting we’ve known from PC gaming peripherals.

Good thing there’s the Red Magic from Nubia (a ZTE sub-brand in China) and it’s built for gaming, without the exaggerated looks of the ROG Phone from ASUS.

I spent a few days with the Red Magic and here’s my hands-on.

It looks like a true gaming smartphone

The Red Magic practically screams “extreme gamer” due to its sharp, hexagonal cutouts, red vents and details, and the glowing LED strip on the back.

However, it’s still your usual premium Android device with a 6-inch Full HD+ display. It’s got an 18:9 aspect ratio and, thankfully, there’s no notch that’ll get in the way when playing games.

The top and bottom bezels are not as thin as the Galaxy S9’s, so there’s still some room for your thumb on the side when holding the phone in landscape with two hands.

Overall, the phone feels really solid thanks to its aluminum unibody, but to make things a bit special and more gaming-focused, the back of Red Magic is a bit curved making it comfortable in my hands.

On the side, it has what they call the “Compete Button” which reminds me of the alert slider on OnePlus’ phones. Instead of shushing notification sounds though, Red Magic’s slider puts the phone in tip-top performance. This is useful when you’re about to play a game.

The Compete Button not only improves the phone’s performance, but it also triggers some settings like blocking app notifications to avoid unnecessary pop-ups while playing. You can also set it to block the virtual navigation button from showing up accidentally.

Most importantly, the Compete Button activates the RGB LED strip at the back. It’s a visual cue showing that the Red Magic is ready to take on the challenge. The LED strip has four preset effects: Skyline, Rainbow Ribbon, Laserwave, and Voice Controlled.

It’s fun to play around with the effects, but my personal favorite is the Voice Controlled option. Well, it’s not exactly based on your own voice but rather with the audio of the game you’re playing.

The light strip also acts as notification light if you wish. Just be sure to lay the phone flat on a table so you won’t miss it.

The rear of the phone is quite intriguing but also distinct. There are four red lines on the corners which I first thought are all speakers. But, only one of them is the actual loudspeaker and it’s the one at the lower left. Even though it’s a mono back-firing speaker, it’s loud and has good bass.

When it comes to power, the Red Magic is not lacking but it could have had a better processor. The phone sports last year’s Snapdragon 835 processor which is a step down compared to this year’s flagship phones. At least it’s paired with 8GB of memory and 128GB of internal storage.

The Snapdragon 835 is still a capable processor with the Adreno 540 GPU. I managed to play a number of games on the Red Magic, and the device was able to handle them like magic. PUBG ran smoothly with the highest settings and the new Asphalt 9: Legends was flawless and stunning on the screen.

The Red Magic was even the best-performing Snapdragon 835-powered phone on AnTuTu’s list. It managed to be in the top ten of the most powerful Android phones last June which is dominated by phones with Snapdragon 845 processor.

Does it have good cameras?

A gaming phone still needs cameras. There’s a 24-megapixel f/1.7 rear shooter which takes good-looking photos. Thanks to the large aperture of the camera’s lens, it can take great photos even in low-light.

Here are some samples:

It might not be the best camera phone around, but that’s not the focus of the Red Magic. It lacks a secondary sensor for bokeh or other effects, but the camera launcher has a couple of modes you can play with including manual shooting. For selfies, there’s an 8-megapixel front-facing camera with an f/2.0 aperture.

Is this you GadgetMatch?

Hard to tell if the phone will impress mobile gaming enthusiasts out there, but the design of Nubia Red Magic is certainly a head-turner. The red accents might be too common in the world of gaming, but the unique RGB LED strip at the back sure gives its own persona.

The Nubia Red Magic is available in China starting at CNY 2,499 for the base variant with 6GB of memory and 64GB of storage. The high-end version I have here with 8GB of memory and 128GB storage is priced at CNY 2,999. In the US, it’s priced at US$ 399 through Indigogo but the funding project is already closed.

Gaming

ICYMI: The World University Cyber League 2020 has begun

The best gamers from the brightest in the region duke it out for gaming supremacy

Published

on

Tencent Sports wanted to up the competition a little bit more in Southeast Asia, following Esports’ rapid rise in the region. Obviously, the best option for that is to hold a tournament to bring in the best of the best for some healthy competition. With the help of Mineski Global, they’ve done exactly just that, and are now on their final stages of the entire tournament.

The World University Cyber League 2020 started last June 28, and featured players from four markets in Southeast Asia. This time around, these players don’t come from established teams and franchises from their home countries. Instead, they are university-sponsored students, as they compete for a prize pool of over US$ 5,000. The Philippines host the SEA qualifiers, through Mineski Global’s Philippine division and its Youth Esports Program.

Students from the Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Thailand are competing across three different games. The roster of games Tencent prepared include popular mobile games like Clash Royale and PUBG Mobile, and an Esports classic in League of Legends.

Qualifiers will end on July 9, with the best teams moving to the WUCL Finals from July 10-15. To know more about the WUCL, you may visit their official website.

Continue Reading

Gaming

KFC announces its own gaming console with a built-in chicken cooker

Might be a gag

Published

on

It’s fair to say that the console wars have begun. Over the past few months, Sony and Microsoft have launched amazing, hype-inducing tidbits at the adoring audience of gamers. With both consoles finally getting their individual chances at the spotlight, are you getting the PlayStation 5 or the Xbox Series X?

Strangely enough, a surprise contender wants to join the next-generation conversation. Earlier last month, KFC Gaming (yes, it’s real) released a teaser video for an upcoming branded console, the KFConsole.

The console is shaped like a KFC chicken bucket, complete with red and white underlights. Sitting close to the bottom, it has the standard disc slot and a power button. Inside, the console sports a “Zinger processor chip clocked at 11GHz.” It has cross platform compatibility and 4K/120fps support.

However, the console’s biggest feature goes beyond gaming. Most of the console’s front is a “chicken chamber,” obviously for cooking chicken. It gives another meaning to an overheating gaming machine.

The short teaser video ends with a probably launch date: November 12, 2020.

Now, if you’re hoping to grab your own gaming bucket, the console is likely an elaborate gag. Though the company has not confirmed the console’s legitimacy, it’s unlikely that a modern gaming console can have a huge “chicken chamber.” Next-generation consoles are already huge without an oven in them.

That said, KFC has released very-real gaming-related campaigns in the past. Very recently, the company launched an official island on the popular island simulator, Animal Crossing: New Horizons. Who knows? They might actually launch something on November 12.

If they do, they are in good company. In the past, Razer has also done a similar off-brand prank to promote a toaster. However, because of universal demand, the gaming company eventually made a real toaster. KFC might fall into the same trend. We definitely wouldn’t say no to our very own chicken chamber.

SEE ALSO: Sony announces huge list of games for the PS5

Continue Reading

Gaming

Microsoft to hold a big Xbox event on July 23

Time to showcase the console’s new games

Published

on

Last month, Sony hosted the most eventful games showcase for the PlayStation 5. Besides a game for everyone, the event finally unveiled the mysterious console in all its glory. Naturally, all the hype is on the PlayStation 5. To those intently following the console wars, the inherent question is what Microsoft has up its sleeve for the Xbox Series X.

Now, Microsoft has confirmed that it is taking the same route as the PlayStation 5. Specifically, the company will hold a similar games showcase on July 23. The event will likely feature all the current projects from the Xbox Games Studios. This includes the new Halo Infinity, a potential return to Fable, Psychonauts 2, and Gears of War.

Of course, as with the PlayStation event, we weren’t really expecting anything. However, the event probably has a few tricks up its sleeve. If anything, it will also showcase the console itself. Though we already know what it looks like, Microsoft can still reveal a few more details about the upcoming console, especially if it hopes to upend the hype generated by the PlayStation 5.

Recently, a leak hinted at a more affordable console in the series. Given that the PlayStation 5 will also have a Digital Edition, the Xbox Series X might go the same route.

The series will likely launch sometime during the holiday season.

SEE ALSO: Will PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X games be more expensive?

Continue Reading

Trending