Following the successful launch of the Black Shark 2 in March, the premium Black Shark 2 Pro has been revealed at an event in China. The Pro variant of the gaming-focused smartphone offers improvements over the standard model including faster display response times, an upgraded processor and an enhanced design, but it’s not on sale in the UK or US – not yet, anyway.
Here’s all you need to know about the Black Shark 2 Pro, including the UK/US release date, pricing details and the key features of the premium smartphone. For more gaming phone inspiration, take a look at our selection of the best gaming phones.
When will the Black Shark 2 Pro be released?
The Black Shark 2 Pro is set to be released in China on 2 August 2019, following the reveal of the high-end gaming phone at a Beijing event on 30 July 2019.
The bad news is that it isn’t available anywhere outside of China right now, although Black Shark claims that’ll change in the near future, teasing that the Black Shark 2 Pro would be “available soon in overseas markets”.
We expect the smartphone to become available in the UK within the next month or two, especially if the company wants to compete with the likes of the upcoming Asus ROG Phone 2 and Razer Phone 3. Those in the US potentially have longer to wait, with the company claiming that it’d arrive in the US in early 2020 at the latest.
We’ll be sure to update this section once we receive confirmation, so check back regularly for Black Shark 2 Pro release details.
How much will the Black Shark 2 Pro cost?
The standard Black Shark 2, which was revealed back in March 2019, is budget-friendly despite the high-end features on offer, and we expect that trend to continue with the Pro - but obviously at a higher price point than the standard model.
UK and European pricing for the new smartphone is yet to be confirmed, but in China, the entry-level Black Shark 2 Pro will set you back RMB 2999 (around £357) while the premium model costs slightly more at RMB 3499 (around £416).
Considering the standard Black Shark 2 comes in at £479 and £559 respectively in the UK, we expect the Black Shark 2 Pro to cost between £600-700 when it eventually appears in Blighty – and with the upgraded internals on offer, it could be worth the extra cash.
What does the Black Shark 2 Pro offer?
The main draw of the Black Shark 2 Pro is the upgraded processor, as the premium gaming smartphone is amongst the first in the world to boast Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 855 Plus chipset. This should provide not only a boost in performance, but enhanced battery life due to more power-efficient consumption. That’s coupled with 12GB of RAM as standard and either 128- or 256GB of RAM, depending on the variant you opt for.
It’s worth pointing out at this point that the only difference between the two models of the Black Shark 2 Pro is the storage on offer – apart from that, you’ll get the same display tech, internals and battery life no matter which variant you opt for.
Although the smartphone looks a lot like the standard Black Shark 2, there are a number of tweaks in the design that enhance the overall look. The more notable changes appear on the rear of the Black Shark 2 Pro, sporting improved grips for a more secure hold and two more RGB lights on either side of the RGB-enabled logo – because you can never have too many lights, right?
The Black Shark 2 Pro sports a 6.39in AMOLED display like its predecessor, but boasts improved latency at 34.7ms compared to 43.5ms of the standard Black Shark 2 to provide quicker response times when playing mobile games. There’s also a slight bump in the camera setup, with one of the rear sensors jumping from 12- to 13Mp – crazy, we know.
Apart from that, the Black Shark 2 Pro boasts many of the same features as the standard Black Shark 2 – and that’s no bad thing. It sports loud 1W stereo speakers, an X-type antenna to avoid connection drop-outs, Master Touch that allows you to trigger custom actions based on the amount of force detected and the world’s first direct touch multilayer liquid cooling system to help keep the phone cool and the framerate high.
We’ll be going hands-on with the Black Shark 2 Pro in the coming weeks, so check back soon for a more detailed breakdown of what’s on offer.