The Asus ROG Ally "Like an April Fool's Double Agent"
Ok, REAL funny Republic of Gamers. You got us. “Look at this new handheld we are announcing during APRIL FOOLS!”. Yeah, that did not get past us clever gamer-guys, we are on to y…wait, what did you say? It’s for real? Like, they are making it and planning on selling it? Huh…well that was quite the April Fool’s joke.
Since we are pretty certain this thing exists, maybe we should take a look at it and where it would land in the current landscape of Windows handhelds (this appears to run Windows 11). Just make sure you take what I say with a grain of salt since ROG has not provided all of the details as of yet.
Now that I am aware that the ROG Ally is out there somewhere, I see the intro video as quite the teaser trailer. From what we can see in the video, this thing will be pretty big, a “chonk.” It gives me OneXPlayer vibes with a hint of Steam Deck button placement. We will see a white, angled, slotted shell as well as glossy buttons with extra fancy RGB lighting and what looks like about a seven-incher when it comes to the screen. The entire package seems to be a bit narrower than the Deck while being roughly the same height and thickness (is it getting hot in here?).
Speaking of the screen, we have some specs on it already: 7-inch, 16:9, 1920x1080, and it runs at 120 Hz. That’s not too shabby!
There are some interesting additions like a faster SD card slot (UHS-2), an advanced fingerprint reader (SSO?) and a 1TB M.2 2230 SSD. One glaring exclusion I noticed is the lack of hall-effect analog sticks; it’s unfortunate but not a deal-breaker. An external GPU can be used as well, though it seems it may only work with one that ASUS makes.
Inside it looks like it will have a "Little Phoenix" APU, AMD's codename for the cut-down variant of their upcoming Phoenix processor which is also coming to laptops soon. It boasts AMD's all new Zen 4 CPU architecture, and RDNA3 GPU, in contrast with the Steam Deck's Zen 2 and RDNA 2 mixture. ASUS claims it’ll be the fastest handheld processor yet, and it'll boast a bespoke dual-fan arrangement that helps create what seems like a very high quality cooling system. We do not yet know what all of this means for battery life, but of course in time that will be revealed. Other than that the hardware is still a bit of a mystery, but one I’m sure plenty of us are looking to investigate as more evidence comes to light.
While we do not actually have the ability to pre-order the device yet, we do have a resource for staying up to date with the specifications of the Ally as they are released: Best Buy. They are offering an e-mail newsletter of sorts that you can sign up for. That way you can be in the know as quickly as possible, especially when it comes to a date it will be available for pre-order.
Another way you can keep yourself posted is by following along with Stubbs’ Handheld News on our YouTube channel. On it, Stubbs shares his thoughts on upcoming devices and offers information on updates, news, and other shenanigans.
April 1st can be a tough day for a lot of us. Maybe someone hid your boots while you were at a party and you had to walk home barefoot; maybe that chocolate bar you were given happened to be a natural aid for “digestion.” However this April Fool’s day also gave us something to look forward to in the form of a new contender in the Windows handheld realm: The ASUS ROG Ally.
If you are a fan of powerful devices running on the most gamer-friendly OS, then this thing will be one to keep an eye on. Will it really be twice as powerful as the Steam Deck? Will it cost as much as an Aya Neo? Will it be good for emulation? As of now, we will just have to wait for answers to those questions. I can assure you, when we know more, you’ll know more. Stay tuned pals.
What's your thoughts on the ROG Ally? Let us know in our Discord!
(This article has been written and provided by Rocketman824)