The best gaming phones in 2024: Asus, Redmagic & more

Jitendra Soni
Playing Fifa game on ROG Phone 7

Looking for a phone that has some serious gaming power? We’ve listed our top picks for the best gaming phones you can buy in 2024.

The best gaming phones not only come with a ton of horsepower under the hood, but also have to offer a great day-to-day experience. The phones come loaded with the most powerful flagship chipsets, fast memory & storage, highly responsive and vibrant displays, a great pair of speakers, optimized software, and hardware add-ons to offer unmatched mobile gaming performance.

However, many flagship smartphones also have the specs to qualify to be great for gaming. They can also offer superior camera tech, and wider availability.

With that in mind, shopping for a gaming phone isn’t easy. Luckily, we’ve rounded up the best smartphones out there right now, with dedicated brands and more well-rounded options.

1. Asus ROG Phone 8 Pro: The best gaming phone

Asus ROG Phone 8 Pro
  • Processor: Snapdragon 8 Gen 3
  • Display: 6.8-inch AMOLED, 2400 x 1080, 165 Hz refresh rate
  • Battery: 5,500 mAh
  • OS: Android 14
  • Memory: 16GB, 24 GB
  • Storage: 512 GB, 1TB
  • Others: Custom gaming mode, shoulder triggers, stereo speakers, RGB lights at the back
Display and stereo speakersAverage camera
Shoulder trigger buttonsPrice is steep
Subtle desingBattery life could be better

The Asus ROG Phone 8 Pro is an absolute beast of a smartphone. Designed specifically for gaming, this phone has many features that you won’t find on any other smartphone, and thus, owning it gives you a distinct advantage over any other player.

The ROG Phone 8 Pro has a louder stereo speaker than any other smartphone, powered by the latest Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 SoC. The phone also has up to 24 GB of fast memory, a buttery smooth and vibrant OLED display coupled with capacitive shoulder triggers that make your gameplay smoother in competitive titles.

The phone also comes with a customized game mode to ensure that you don’t run into any lag or stuttering. With that said, the phone has a rather average camera setup.

2. RedMagic 9 Pro: The best value gaming phone

RedMagic 9 Pro
  • Processor: Snapdragon 8 Gen 3
  • Display: 6.8-inch AMOLED, 24800 x 1116, 120 Hz refresh rate
  • Battery: 6,500 mAh
  • OS: Android 14
  • Memory: Up to 16GB
  • Storage: Up to 512 GB
  • Others: Custom gaming mode, shoulder triggers, stereo speakers, RGB lights at the back, In-display selfie camera
Incredible battery lifeThe average rear camera & subpar selfie camera
Great value for moneySoftware can be lacking
Amazing performance

The RedMagic 9 Pro is another killer gaming smartphone, which boasts fantastic specs. The device is made by an offshoot of ZTE. But, the RedMagic 9 Pro offers an uncompromised mobile gaming experience. You have the most powerful hardware specification packed into a neat, boxy device that packs a punch above its competitive MSRP.

What makes the RedMagic 9 Pro unique is its shoulder buttons, with an additional gaming mode switch. It is also the only phone with an actual RGB fan that keeps it cool even during extended gaming sessions.

However, due to the included exhaust fan, the Redmagic 9 Pro doesn’t have a water and dust resistance IP rating. Moreover, the camera performance leaves much to be desired.

3. Asus ROG Phone 7: The best affordable gaming phone

Asus ROG Phone 7
  • Processor: Snapdragon 8 Gen 2
  • Display: 6.78-inch AMOLED, 2448 x 1080, 165 Hz refresh rate
  • Battery: 6,000 mAh
  • OS: Android 14
  • Memory: Up to 16GB
  • Storage: Upto 512 GB
  • Others: Custom gaming mode, shoulder triggers, stereo speakers, RGB lights at the back
Excellent displayAverage camera
Stereo speakersLimited software updates
Good performance

The Asus ROG Phone 7 might be a generation old, but it can still pack a punch. If you’re looking for a great gaming phone but do not want to spend a fortune, then the ROG phone 7 is perfect.

It has a Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 SoC at its core, coupled with blazing-fast memory and storage. When we tested the phone, we were highly impressed with its loud stereo speakers, fluid display, and rapid touch response. The customizable shoulder trigger and an efficient cooling mechanism meant you would always get fantastic gaming performance from the handset, too.

The ROG Phone 7 also has an excellent dual-toned finish at the back and subtle RGB lighting, making it stand out when compared to rivals.

4. Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra: The best Samsung gaming phone

Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra
  • Processor: Snapdragon 8 Gen 3
  • Display: 6.8-inch AMOLED
  • Battery: 5,000 mAh
  • OS: Android 14
  • Camera: 4x rear( 200MP+50MP+10MP+ 12MP) + 12MP front
Incredible displayBulky design
Amazing performancePrice is incredibly steep
Software support

The Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra is not only the best Android phone, but is also amongst the best gaming phones too. Almost every element of the handset is best-in-class: From display, processor, memory, storage options, battery pack, design, AI-powered software, and speakers.

Another reason why you might want to pick up the Galaxy S24 Ultra over other smartphones is due to availability: Since it’s one of Samsung’s biggest flagship devices, it’s available almost everywhere.

The Galaxy S24 Ultra has some of the best cameras on a smartphone too, making it a more well-roudned option than most devices on this list. But, with that said, it is a premium phone and commands a higher price.

5. iPhone 15 Pro Max: The best Apple gaming phone

iPhone 15 Pro Max
  • Processor: A17 Pro Bionic
  • Display: 6.7-inch AMOLED, 2778 x 1284, 120 Hz
  • Battery: 4,441 mAh
  • OS: iOS 17
  • Camera: 48MP+12MP+ 12MP + 12MP front
Amazing performancePrice
Brilliant cameraComparatively slow charging speeds
Great display

The iPhone 15 Pro Max is one of the best smartphones that money can buy now. It might only be up-staged with the iPhone 16 Pro Max when it arrives.

It has an extremely powerful A17 Pro bionic chipset under the hood, including a super-responsive display, fast memory, storage, and a highly optimized operating system that’s designed to get the best out of the silicon.

When it comes to gaming, the iPhone 15 Pro Max might not have additional hardware or a dedicated gaming mode. However, it easily ranks among the best gaming smartphones without any issues, and can even play AAA titles like Resident Evil 4: Remake natively.

With the iPhone, you not only get a gaming phone, but you also get an excellent camera for photos and videos, a great communication device, and a stunning display to watch movies and videos on.

6. OnePlus 12R: The best budget gaming phone

OnePlus 12R
  • Display: 6.78-inch AMOLED , 120Hz refresh rate
  • CPU: Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 SoC
  • Memory: Up to 16GB RAM
  • Storage: Up to 512GB
  • Battery: 5,500mAh
  • OS: Android 14
PriceGimicky camera module
Amazing performance
Build quality

The OnePlus 12R is ideal for someone looking for a budget gaming phone. With a Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 SoC under the hood, this affordable OnePlus phone is no slouch if you want to kill some virtual monsters, but don’t need to splash for frills like a dedicated gaming mode, active cooling, or capacitive buttons.

The 6.78-inch LTPO AMOLED panel with 4500 nits peak brightness and a smooth 120Hz refresh rate can get bright enough to game even outdoors in a pinch.

Thanks to a hefty 5,500 mAh battery with fast charging chops, the OnePlus 12R offers extended gaming sessions without lagging or stuttering. The OnePlus 12R also sweetens the deal thanks to its affordable price point.

7. Nubia Z60 Ultra

Nubia Z60 Ultra
  • Display: 6.8-inch AMOLED, 1116 x 2480 pixels, 120Hz
  • CPU: Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 SoC
  • Memory: 8GB, 12GB or 16GB RAM
  • Storage: 256GB or 512GB
  • OS: Android 14
Incredible displayHalf baked software
Amazing performance
Value for money

The Nubia Z60 Ultra is extremely similar to the RedMagic 9 Pro in design and specs. It even borrows some of its features. The phone has a large AMOLED display up front, a 120Hz refresh rate, and a game mode that helps get you the most out of the extremely powerful Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chipset.

It also has a large battery, fast-charging tech, and a relatively powerful camera module. While the phone is not perfect when it comes to software optimization, it has enough horsepower to be worthy of being included on this list.

Just note that because of it’s software experience, the phone isn’t perfect in every way, but it could serve as a viable alternative to the pricier options on this list.

Are gaming phones still worth buying?

Most modern flagship phones are so powerful and capable that they can run any mobile game efficiently. However, not all of them are designed for gaming, so they lack specific features like advanced cooling mechanisms, dedicated gaming modes, and built-in physical controls, which gives some phones a distinctive edge.

That said, you can still add external cooling devices and physical controllers, but not only are these costly, but they add to the bulk of the devices and might not be as effective as a native solution.

So, if you’re a serious gamer, picking up a gaming smartphone dedicated to games, alongside a regular phone for your other requirements might be a good idea. But, if you want to do it all, you could easily pick up a flagship-tier device like the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra.

How much RAM do you need in a gaming phone?

Any gaming or flagship phone in 2024 has at least 8GB of RAM, making them ideal for gaming. Going below 6GB of RAM is unsuitable for gaming, as it might struggle with loading high-resolution textures in resource-intensive games.

How to choose the best gaming phone

Any smartphone can be a good gaming phone if it can offer excellent performance, has a great display, long battery life, and, most importantly, can run the games you like.

Ideally, a good gaming phone should have built-in features such as high-end specifications, including a flagship SoC, fast memory, and ample storage to handle resource-intensive games.

Additionally, a powerful thermal management system is essential, as it ensures that the device doesn’t heat up while playing games and that the phone’s performance doesn’t get throttled. Excessive heat can also damage the phone’s battery life.

Dedicated hardware triggers are also a plus for any gaming phone. This means you do not need add-on accessories to play your favorite games. These triggers or buttons are customizable for different games, offering you the best gaming experience on the go.

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About The Author

Jitendra loves writing about tech, especially smartphones. He has almost 10 years of experience. He spearheaded the TechRadar India editorial operations and has written for TechRadar, TechRadar Pro, Free Press Journal, Mobile Scout, IB Times Singapore, Indulge Express, and more. He can be reached at