Recently, we got our hands on the ASUS ROG Phone 6, and in our office full of avid gamers, it didn’t lack attention and interest.
While exploring what the phone had to offer, here were the features that stood out to us, based on how they enhanced our mobile gaming experience.
1. 165Hz refresh rate
The ASUS ROG Phone 6 isn’t the only gaming phone with a 165Hz refresh rate, but that is the highest spec available in the market at the moment.
For comparison, most of our phones have a standard refresh rate of 60Hz to 72Hz, with the option of going up to 120Hz while gaming or watching a video. Of course, this is at the cost of battery life.
Having such a high refresh rate comes in handy when playing a competitive game like PUBG Mobile or Apex Mobile, as the smooth and quick responsiveness is crucial in securing a win.
Admittedly though, not every mobile game even requires a 165Hz refresh rate to look good, as most are capped at 144Hz, even PUBG Mobile.
So, yes, it’s overkill, but it’s still cool to have and might be useful down the road when mobile games get even more polished and advanced.
Also allowing you to get the most out of your game’s gorgeous visuals is the 6.78-inch AMOLED HDR+10 display that ASUS brings to users after teaming up with Samsung.
2. The Armoury Crate app
The Armoury Crate app basically lets you control the phone’s system performance with three different modes: X Mode, Dynamic, and Ultra durable (Eco).
It also blocks off any incoming calls and notifications while you’re gaming, because seriously, who wants their mum calling in the middle of a match and ruining their kill streak?
The app lets you change the colours and lighting effects of the ROG logo and ROG’s slogan too, which you can show off on the back of your phone as a great conversation starter.
Leaning into the whole gaming phone aesthetic is also the ROG Phone 6’s ability to let you pick pre-set wallpaper themes from some of your favourite and popular games.
3. 14 simultaneous touch points that are customisable
Is a gaming phone really a gaming phone if it doesn’t have touch triggers to enhance the gaming experience?
On the ROG Phone 6, you can map out 14 customisable touch points on the screen simultaneously.
This literally takes your mobile gaming to the next level, because you can customise all sorts of motions for different controls in your game.
To activate it, launch your favourite mobile game and swipe from the top-left corner to activate a minimised view of the Armoury Crate.
Here is where you can activate the AirTrigger 6 feature, allowing you to do more in-game while doing less IRL.
There’s also the Macro recording function for fans of idle games. Once you’ve activated it, it will record your actions, and the phone will do the gaming for you.
4. A DIRAC sound system
It may not be a familiar name, but this sound system is behind those of BMW cars and JBL speakers.
Your audio settings can be optimised in the ASUS AudioWizard menu, where there are four modes to choose from: Dynamic, Music, Cinema, and Game.
There’s also a 10-band customisable equaliser to satisfy your audiophile needs.
5. An ergonomic build
ASUS maintains the ROG Phone model of comfortable rounded edges in the Phone 6 series, making longer gaming sessions possible and less painful.
There are also two charging ports, one on the bottom for regular usage, and another in the centre of its long edge for when you’re gaming in landscape mode.
6. Massive 6,000mAh battery
This one is self-explanatory, so we’ll keep it short.
Having a large battery that can keep up with one’s hours of non-stop gaming is no doubt an important feature for serious mobile gamers, so the ASUS ROG Phone 6 satisfies in that regard.
When it needs charging though, the HyperCharge feature ensures that the phone gets juiced up quickly so you can get right back to gaming without fiddling with the wire (even if you’re using the other more conveniently-placed charging port).
Check out the ASUS ROG Phone 6 in action here:
Farisya Bakes, The Cake Therapist. The name of this Malaysian business sounds self-explanatory right off the bat, but having tried their banoffee pie (and absolutely ravishing it), we began to grow curious about just who Farisya really was, and why she called herself “The Cake Therapist”.
Turns out, there’s more to her title than just being a play on how dessert can heal the soul. We got the opportunity to speak to Farisya herself, and she was happy to retrace the steps she took to become Farisya Bakes.
We went all the way back to 2012, when Farisya was still doing her degree in Psychology.
“I was this girl who did not eat desserts, that was just trying out baking who suddenly found out she enjoyed making a business out of it,” she revealed.
It earned her a little pocket money then, and having only Google and YouTube as her guides to making pastries, cakes, and desserts didn’t deter her.
When the mix of her personal life and degree got a little too hectic though, she decided to put the business to an end, thinking she’d never go back to it.
… Right up until just before the start of the pandemic, when she felt the urge to work on something, create something, and earn her own money after growing uninspired.
So, back to baking she turned, and Farisya Bakes was born.
Baking her way to another career
The name “Farisya Bakes” was inspired by Zöe Bakes, an American baker whose style Farisya loved.
At the same time, though she had set her sights on baking, her desire as a Psychology graduate to practice never dwindled.
Thus, “The Cake Therapist” became a play on words while Farisya worked towards her ambition of pursuing her Master’s in Psychology and getting licensed as a certified therapist.
Since she had her entrepreneurial stint while studying, she was able to apply the lessons learnt then to Farisya Bakes, mainly those to do with finance.
Thus, Farisya Bakes, The Cake Therapist was pretty smooth sailing. “I had everything in mind, from design to what I wanted to bake, what sort of themes of desserts I wanted,” Farisya recalled.
“Everything was just very clear to me in the beginning, but when the demand started to grow, it became overwhelming. Learning how to make big batches was not easy.”
Being self-taught, she had to figure it out on her own, as she was also working with no helper at the time.
Eventually though, she began working with her best friend, Siti, whom she studied and graduated with in university.
Siti is now her full-time baking assistant, and helping them out is also Kak Sinta, Farisya’s domestic helper.
Tackling her own business burnout
Farisya today is able to take on some other responsibilities in the business, and she’s behind their product photos on Instagram as well as their overall brand designs, making them from scratch with creative phone apps.
She made it clear that she enjoys what she does, but also admitted that this doesn’t diminish her feelings of burnout throughout the business.
“Sometimes, I find it so hard to get up to work but I know that I have to, because this business is what puts food on the table and sustains mine and also my children’s lifestyles,” Farisya said.
At one point, her fatigue and burnout began affecting her focus as a mother to her children.
Realising this, she knew she needed to do something, and that was to prioritise herself.
“In order to give, you need to be filled. So I chose to start listening to my body, to take breaks in between. I stopped working extra hard. I limit my orders, I learnt to say ‘No’ to orders when I already have too many and I know adding [to] the list will make it overwhelming.”
“For someone who was a people pleaser, I’d hate to disappoint but it was definitely something that I had to learn,” Farisya candidly shared.
Most importantly, she said that she went for therapy in order to express her feelings, and work on herself and self-healing.
With that, she was able to become a much more present mother, and stopped dreading work.
Sweet treats for every occasion
On Farisya Bakes’ menu, you’ll find banoffee pies, chocolate tarts, cookie bars, cheesecakes, choux au craquelin, and more.
After baking decorative cakes, birthday cakes, and other celebratory desserts during her first entrepreneurial experience, Farisya specifically chose to create desserts that people could enjoy without any occasion this time around.
One of Farisya Bakes’ most popular desserts today is the choux au craquelin.
“People loved it so much, and the irony was that the choux au craquelin was one of the toughest desserts I had to make in terms of consistency,” she said.
“Yes, a lot of tears were involved in the making of that dessert but me being resilient, I knew I had to master it. Even after two years, I am still learning.”
Her efforts aren’t for naught either, as the positive responses she’s gotten and the growth that Farisya Bakes has gotten through word of mouth are proof that hard work yields results.
Gratefully, she shared that she’s even had customers travel from afar just to purchase her products, or who paid delivery fees higher than the cost of her products in order to enjoy them.
Merging her two interests in the future
With Farisya having seemingly found her footing with the baking business, we had to wonder if she was going to end it once she is able to achieve her dream of becoming a therapist.
To that, she firmly said, “Definitely not. It took a lot out of me to run this business, and looking [at] how well it’s going, I do not intend to let it go.”
For now, her short-term plan is to get agents to help their sea salt chocolate chip cookie bar bites reach more people in the market, ideally across all 14 states.
Then, their 10-year plan would be to open a boutique bakery in the perimeters of KL, and a few more in towns Farisya adores such as Melaka’s and Penang’s, and maybe have small pop-up bakeries everywhere possible.
“It’s a dream to merge both psychology and desserts together and that is definitely a goal if I were to ever open up my own retail space,” Farisya said.
Safe to say, she is ambitious, driven, and positive about bringing people happiness and dopamine, whether that’s through her future therapy sessions or her baked desserts.
- Learn more about Farisya Bakes, The Cake Therapist here.
- Read about more Malaysian F&B startups here.
The hobby of custom mechanical keyboards is a new obsession I’ve been exploring lately.
It’s only been a couple of months, but I’ve already made my first mistake by buying tactile switches for alpha keys that turned out to be too loud for someone typing at least 2,000 words a day.
In short, what that means is that I wished I had a place to test out a keyboard’s build before I made the purchase, which set me back by about RM70. I’d consider that to be a costly beginner’s mistake.
While the former is located in Penang and also serves coffee, Keebs Project would be a closer alternative for this PJ kid to visit, since it’s in Negeri Sembilan.
The state is also the hometown of Ivan, the founder behind Keebs Project, a business that began as a keyboard marketplace on Shopee about a year ago.
From URL to IRL
The ex-accountant got into the mechanical keyboard hobby when he got his first Techware Phantom TKL.
Like most mechanical keyboard enthusiasts, this led him down the path of researching the hobby to customise his own builds.
Ivan then recognised the opportunity in the market to sell mechanical keyboards and their components on Shopee, Instagram, and Facebook.
Looking at Keebs Project’s social media today, you’ll notice that the business has since found fans in Singapore and the Philippines, which is why it made sense for the marketplace to become a full-time commitment for Ivan.
When deciding what products to list, Ivan said that it comes down to market research and figuring out what customers want.
With over 230 products listed, Keebs Project is where you can find fully built keyboards, switches, stabilisers, lubes, keycaps, sound-dampening foam, and more.
Keebs Project adds new items to its product line every week, and will also make arrangements to sell products that are specifically requested by customers but aren’t already listed in the store.
“Slowly after a year of hard work and perseverance, we opened our own physical store for keyboards in Negeri Sembilan,” Ivan shared.
A necessary investment cost
The whole process of choosing a custom mechanical keyboard can be broken down into three steps:
- Choosing a keyboard layout (how many keys your keyboard has);
- Picking which switches you want (this contributes to the sound and feel of your typing experience);
- Keycaps (mainly contributes to how your keyboard looks).
Customers who visit Keebs Project’s store will get to sample all the available keyboard builds.
The keyboards can also be equipped with different varieties of switches and keycaps so customers can choose how they’d like their board according to personal preferences, before buying.
At the moment, Ivan is the sole person attending to visitors.
Despite the high capital and operational expenses that come with running a physical outlet to sell keyboard components, Ivan believes it’s an important investment to make.
“We feel that it is a necessity for us to provide a showroom for our customers, especially newcomers, to experience this hobby in person,” Ivan told Vulcan Post.
After all, while customers will know how a keyboard will look and sound from researching, they won’t actually know what the keyboard feels like through a computer screen.
A place to build, modify, and gather
Since opening on September 17, Ivan has seen foot traffic mostly pick up on the weekends from visitors who’ve heard about Keebs Project on Instagram and Shopee.
“There is an equal number of [keyboard] veterans to those who are new to this hobby coming to try our new boards and switches too,” he said.
Other than allowing customers to test keyboards, Keebs Project could also make a great space to host meetups, hangouts, and workshops for Malaysians in the keyboard community, which seems to be in line with the founder’s plans.
Ivan shared that he does have plans on hosting meetups, although the community in Malaysia is still nascent. (Based on my observations though, the local mechanical keyboard community is a pretty passionate bunch, so there should be no problem in gathering us up and clicking over our keyboard preferences.)
He also shared that he would consider running keyboard-related workshops as they can bring more people into the hobby of building custom mechanical keyboards.
“Other than that, we have provided spaces and tools for keyboard lovers to bring over their own keyboards to make some modifications to them,” Ivan added.
When asked about Ivan’s end goal for Keebs Project, he shared that he hopes to see it play a role in expanding the community, and perhaps even becoming a tourist attraction for newcomers to experience a new hobby.
Featured Image Credit: Keebs Project