The new big: Lenovo unveils phone with Snapdragon 855, 12GB RAM and 512GB storage

(Image credit: Lenovo)

Lenovo is more known for its mid-range phones, like the Lenovo Z5 that came out last June or, through its sub-brand Motorola, the Moto Z3. But today the company unveiled what may be the most powerful Android phone on the market: the Lenovo Z5 Pro GT, which might be the first phone to pack a Snapdragon 855 when it’s released in China on January 24.

It’s unclear when or even if it will come to the rest of the world, which is a shame. This is clearly a souped-up device to cater to users eager for top-tier performance, and it will reportedly cost the equivalent of $640.

For that upper mid-range price, the Z5 Pro GT far outstrips the specs on the Lenovo Z5 Pro, which was released in November.

The Z5 Pro GT comes with an industry-topping 12GB of RAM, 512GB of storage and a 6.39-inch (2,340 x 1,080) OLED display. It packs a 3,350mAh battery, a pair of rear cameras (16MP & 24MP) and two front-facing cameras (16MP & an infrared 8MP). 

Lenovo opted to hide the twin front-facing cameras behind a sliding front screen – a design option we’ve seen most recently in the Xiaomi Mi Mix 3 – which gives the notchless Z5 Pro GT an astonishing 95% screen-to-body ratio. Unfortunately, the earpiece is nestled between the cameras, meaning you'll have to slide down the screen to take calls, according to Engadget.

The future, but not 5G

Crucially, however, it won’t support 5G. If Lenovo ends up being the first to launch a 5G-compatible smartphone, as it boasted last year, it won’t be with this special-edition phone.

Still, the Lenovo Z5 Pro GT will manage a smartphone first with its 12GB of RAM. We've seen these kinds of outlandish specs before, but mostly from special limited-run versions of existing phones like the Porsche Design Huawei Mate 20 RS and OnePlus 6T McLaren Edition

If you're still interested in this powerful phone, Chinese buyers can preorder it starting on January 13.

David Lumb

David is now a mobile reporter at Cnet. Formerly Mobile Editor, US for TechRadar, he covered phones, tablets, and wearables. He still thinks the iPhone 4 is the best-looking smartphone ever made. He's most interested in technology, gaming and culture – and where they overlap and change our lives. His current beat explores how our on-the-go existence is affected by new gadgets, carrier coverage expansions, and corporate strategy shifts.