ASUS might not be the first name you think of when it comes to top tier Smartphones, but that hasn’t stopped the company announcing a team of very appealing Android handsets at this years Computex. ASUS have announce three phones under their Zenfone brand, naturally the Zenfone 3 to replace last years Zenfone 2.
Together the three Smartphones ASUS have announced have a very lot in common, all three have gorgeous 1080p displays covered in Gorilla Glass 4 *exception being the 3* which takes over the entire front and back of the device as well, both of which are surrounded by a metal frame around the side.
All three phones also come with a wide angle 8 Megapixel Front Facing Camera which should be perfect for Selfie needs and more thanks to its 1080p video recording.
All three phones also support 24-bit audio, meaning the crispest audio files, such as those from lossless formats such as .FLAC will be able to be listened at their full glory, providing the addition of good headphones naturally.
The Zenfone 3 is the smallest of the three, despite supporting a relatively large 5.5inch Super IPS+ Display at 1080p (401ppi), and is definitely the budget minded phone of the bunch. Pricing for the Zenfone 3 is expected to be just $249, which is incredible with these specs and great build quality. The Zenfone 3 is the only one of the three however protected by Gorilla Glass 3, rather than 4.
Powering the Zenfone 3 is a relatively decent Octa Core SnapDragon 625 processor, backed up by either 3GB of RAM on the 32GB option, or 4GB of RAM on the higher 64GB storage option, a pattern you’ll see more of as we continue.
Camera wise, the Zenfone 3 has a Sony 16MP Camera with f/2.0 aperture, laser and phase detection auto-focus, OIS and dual-LED Flash, this is a very good Camera for it’s price point. However, being a budget device, video recording will be 1080p max, which is still not a bad thing considering the price.
The Zenfone 3 features a generous 3,000mAh battery, support for Dual-SIM in certain markets, rear mounted Fingerprint sensor, and USB-C connectivity, though no Fast Charge.
Zenfone 3 Deluxe
The star of the show though is the Zenfone 3 Deluxe, don’t let the 5.7inch 1080p panel (386ppi) fool you, that display is Super AMOLED, and the rest of the device is premium from top to bottom. The Zenfone 3 Deluxe does share the same general design, however whilst the device does have a metal frame, you will not find any antenna lines anywhere you look, which is great to see. The glass on the front and back of the Deluxe is also protected by Gorilla Glass 4, which should be hopefully enough to cover you from scuffs and scratches.
Powering the Zenfone 3 Deluxe is mostly what you’d expect from an Android flagship with a very big exception. SnapDragon 820 processor with the usual Adreno 530GB, with storage configurations of 64GB including 4GB of RAM … but if 4GB of RAM just isn’t enough, the Zenfone 3 Deluxe is the first Android device to be available with a 6GB of RAM option for the 128GB or 256GB options, which is just insane.
Camera wise you’ve a very good Camera on the Zenfone Deluxe, a Sony IMX318 23MP Camera with all the bells and whistles you could hope for, naturally we’re looking forward to seeing how this thing does in the wild, but it both looks and feels incredible to use. Unlimited 4K Video Recording is also included on the device, in which 4-axis OIS should help smoothen out.
Interestingly, the Zenfone 3 Deluxe has the same 3,000mAh battery as the non-deluxe Zenfone 3, so we’ll see how it performs with much more under the hood performance. Like the Zenfone 3, you’ll find a rear mounted Fingerprint Scanner as well as USB-C though with Fast Charging support.
The Zenfone 3 Deluxe is expected to go on sale from $499, which we’re expecting is the base model.
Zenfone 3 Ultra
The Zenfone 3 Ultra is the phablet of the three, which interestingly takes a lot out of both devices we’ve seen so far. Performance wise it’s taken the more mid-range approach by adopting the Zenfone 3’s style performance with a slightly beefier SnapDragon 652 processor, but does have some aces up its sleeve. The Zenfone 3 Ultra has a 6.8inch IPS Panel, which yes is 1080p as well (324ppi) but doesn’t look bad at all in person, and features dual speakers ASUS are branding “TV Grade” and DTS Headphone 7.1 Surround Sound support, which sounds great on paper. Unfortunately the speakers are both on the bottom, but still better than one suppose.
The Zenfone 3 Ultra features identical Cameras to the Zenfone 3 Deluxe, the same Sony 23MP rear and 8MP front are found with the same features on both. Like all Zenfone 3 models, your RAM comes down to which model you choose, 32GB/64GB models will come with 3GB of RAM standard, with 4GB of RAM available for the 128GB model.
The Zenfone 3 Ultra however does have some features of it’s own, for starters a very beefy battery, a 4600mAh battery which ASUS claim with Quick Charge 3.0 can get to 60% in just 40 minutes from the USB-C port. The Zenfone 3 Ultra also puts the Fingerprint in a more conventional bottom middle position, and returns us the latter LG days with the volume rockers at the back.
Pricing for the Zenfone 3 Ultra is looking around $479, again for the base model.
And there you have it, some pretty awesome devices from ASUS in the Zenfone 3 line. Hopefully ASUS can make a bigger dent than they have so far in the market, as this device really deserve recognition.