Gaming phones are a newer niche for Android devices, and Nubia is one of the companies running headlong into this fledgling field. This past May, we took a look at the Red Magic 5, and we did not come away impressed thanks to numerous bugs and compromises. Now that the Red Magic 5S is here, and we can say for certain that features like internal cooling and a high refresh rate come at a cost: the Red Magic 5S is good for gaming but not much else.
The Red Magic 5 isn't a complete wash—its gaming-centric features and performance help to even out the device's lack of polish.
This story was originally published and last updated .
Nubia came out swinging earlier this year with the RedMagic 5G, a powerhouse of a phone that packed flagship specs at only a fraction of the price. When considering a sequel, it's hard to improve upon an already compelling package, but Nubia managed to expand even further on this winning formula with better thermals, faster triggers, and an improved Game Space. Introducing the new RedMagic 5S, on sale today starting at just $579.
The Red Magic 5G came out 4 months ago as Nubia's first 5G gaming phone. Today, the ZTE spin-off is at it yet again with a small iteration on the Red Magic 5G — the Red Magic 5S is available for pre-order right now.
Nubia is following up on the apparent success of the Red Magic 5G with the same formula it used last year: an incrementally improved "S" bump. The new Red Magic 5S packs most of the same specs with a few tweaks like faster shoulder trigger polling, better cooling, and faster storage. It's China-only for now, but a global release is planned for September.