Lenovo's new super-fast gaming phone packs a pop-up 20-MP selfie cam
Lenovo's new gaming phone is the Legion Phone Duel, and as well as packing 5G technology inside, it's also one of the first handsets to be announced with Qualcomm's top-end Snapdragon 865 Plus flagship processor on board.
With a 6.65-inch, 2,340 x 1,080 pixel AMOLED display running at a refresh rate of 144 Hz, it's a phone built for gaming on the go, and specifically gaming while in landscape mode, as you can tell from the 20-MP selfie camera that emerges from the side of the handset (or the top, if you're holding it in landscape mode).
That Snapdragon 865 Plus CPU is backed up with 12 GB or 16 GB of RAM, 256 GB or 512 GB of internal storage, and a 5,000-mAh battery that's actually split up into two 2,500-mAh pieces. Lenovo says that keeps the device cooler during demanding gaming sessions, with the help of some liquid cooling technology, and thanks to 90-W fast charging you can go from zero to 100 percent of battery power in as little as just 30 minutes (as long as you're using both the available USB-C charging ports at once).
And you don't have to rely on battery power either: with the power cables connecting to the underside of the phone while it's in landscape mode (on the opposite side to the selfie camera), you can keep on gaming while you're charging. Meanwhile, dual front-facing speakers make sure the audio from your games has plenty of aural oomph.
Looks and design matter in what is an already busy gaming phone market, and Lenovo doesn't disappoint here. The Legion Phone Duel is suitably flashy and eye-catching, with programmable RGB lighting on the back, and the option of a red or blue color scheme. The phone tips the scales at 239 g (8.43 oz) and is a reasonably svelte 9.9 mm (0.38 in) at its thickest point.
Around the back of the phone there's a both a 64-MP main camera and a 16-MP ultra-wide camera, just in case you find time to snap any photos between gaming, and the handset also comes with Wi-Fi 6 support and dual-SIM capabilities. There's no wireless charging though, and no headphone jack.
Software is always an important consideration for mobile gamers, and Lenovo's customized take on Android makes it very simple for users to start streaming gameplay straight to YouTube or Twitch. Footage from the pop-up selfie camera can be overlaid on top of the game recordings, and you can also easily review the highlight clips you've collected once a gaming session is over. Meanwhile, four noise-canceling microphones ensure your video game commentary is always picked up.
We're not quite finished yet. The phone also boasts two ultrasonic trigger buttons on the corners for easier in-game control, and Lenovo is also promising a bunch of software tweaks to improve touch input responsiveness and haptic feedback, as well as making it simple to connect up a keyboard, a mouse, and even an external display.
The feature list for the Lenovo Legion Phone Duel is a lengthy one, and from the specs list at least, this looks like a handset to seriously challenge the best gaming phones on the market – it's certainly the one with the fastest processor. Unfortunately, it's only launching in China for now, at a starting price of 41,500 Chinese yuan (about US$555). It's expected to reach Europe in due course, but a US release isn't currently planned.