A late-night surprise hit us when infamous leaker Nittrx posted a first look video of Anbernic’s newest handheld, the RG556.

A promo render of the upcoming RG556, in transparent blue. (Source: Reddit)

Sporting a 5.5 inch 16:9 1080p panel (rumoured to be OLED), a Unisoc Tiger T820 processor, and a 5500mAh battery, the RG556 seems to be Anbernic’s answer to the recently released Retroid Pocket 4. Initial pictures show an ergonomic design, with offset Switch-style sticks and a smooth, glossy D-pad. The triggers appear to be analogue, though that hasn’t been fully confirmed (and who knows if they’ll register in Android games!), and there’s only one offset USB-C port. Video out capability hasn’t been confirmed either.

A top-down view of the device, as well as a peek at the packaging design – classic Anbernic. (Source: Reddit)

If the rumours about this device sporting an OLED panel are true, this could put a serious dent in the appeal of AYANEO’s Pocket Air; and while the T820 is a newcomer to this side of the tech world, GadgetVersus seems to indicate that we could be looking at a device with equivalent power to the Dimensity D900 seen in the Retroid Pocket 4, with a bonus of better power efficiency.
Of course, that depends on how good the software is – Anbernic left a surprising amount of power on the table with the RG505 and RG405M, leaving community devs (shout-out to TheGammaSqueeze!) to pick up the slack. Retroid, on the other hand, have a great track record when it comes to clean, performant software – though battery performance and screen quality concerns on the RP4 Pro might just give Anbernic an easy open.

Pictures of the front and back of the new device, in glossy white and sleek transparent blue. (Source: Reddit)

Of course, we’ll have to wait for initial review units to drop in a couple months (maybe sooner – we’ve got our fingers crossed for late February) to see how well these specs stack up to the competition in the real world. But for now, what do you think? Do you love the design or hate it? Are you excited for the first Anbernic device to sport the 55x moniker since the infamous RG552? Will you refuse to consider it, because they put the D-pad on the bottom again?

It didn’t take long for more information to come out regarding the RG556, as Anbernic posted a video on the official YouTube channel showing off some gameplay on the upcoming handheld. The “demonstration” video only lasts for less than 2 minutes but shows off the handheld playing several Android games, including Genshin Impact, Nine Parchments, and others. But it does show the RG556 playing a few PS2 classics such as God of War II, Devil May Cry 3, and Half-Life. At the end of the video, two different colors are revealed, one with a matte black finish and the other that looks like the Blue version that was leaked over the weekend.

Anbernic didn’t reveal any specifics, so we aren’t sure whether this is going to be an Odin 2 competitor, or if it will aim to take on the Retroid Pocket 4/4 Pro. However, a recent post on r/SBCGaming gave everyone a bit of an overview of the leaks leading up to now, including a few benchmarks. Provided that Anbernic hasn’t made any last-minute changes, the RG556 is likely to use the Unisoc T820, which puts this in the range of the non-Pro Retroid Pocket 4.

On the bright side, we see that the analog sticks are backlit, which is becoming a more popular trend with these Switch-style handhelds. Not to mention the stacked shoulder buttons, which will likely pair nicely with the more ergonomic grips.

Since we’re still waiting to see an official listing, some are wondering where the RG556 stacks up in terms of size. Well, thanks to a member in the RH Discord (you should definitely join), we don’t have to wonder any longer. According to the images provided, the RG556 measures in at 22cm x 8.5cm x ~1.5cm.

For reference, the Odin 2 is 22.5cm x 9.8cm x 1.7cm, so we can see that Anbernic is positioning the RG556 as a direct competitor. Well, at least when it comes to the size and overall design.

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