As Zenfone 2 continuously dominates the hype in the internet, Asus Philippines is geared to officially launch it in the country on Saturday May 16, 2015, and as anticipation rises, a lot of people has already signed up for pre-orders.
We’re fortunate enough to get early access to it, so we can offer our first impressions and thoughts on this Asus’ new flagship.
The first thing you’ll notice with the Zenfone 2 is the design. The curved soft touch plastic back cover with brushed-metal finish gives a very premium look – it’s a wow thing. The curvature also provides secure grip, and intuitive control and convenience, you can hold the device with an exceptional comfort in your hand and I haven’t experienced this comfort in any of my phones. The curve design helps achieved its 3.9mm thinness.
The dual tone flash is well placed above the 13MP rear camera, the new volume button placement on the Asus Zenfone 2 is similar to the design of LG’s flagships, ideally-positioned for the user’s index finger. I find it sakto lang sa kamay, and gives ergonomic access to volume rocker.
On the front side, Zenfone 2 features 5.5-inch Full HD IPS display with a 403ppi pixel density that squeezes into a compact body equivalent to a 5-inch smartphone. As for the initial impression, the screen looks vibrant, while the 178-degree viewing angle is satisfactory. The ultra-narrow 3.3mm bezel on the sides of the phone looks more than impressive, giving Zenfone 2 a remarkable 72% screen-to-body ratio maximizing the viewing experience.
The phone also features three capacitive buttons for Back, Home, and Recent Apps. And if you’re curious about the screen’s protection, the display is covered with Corning Gorilla Glass 3 for superior resistance to damage and fingerprints. The ZenFone 2 color portfolio includes Osmium Black, Sheer Gold, Glacier Gray, Glamor Red and Ceramic White.
As for the internals, Zenfone 2 massively packs a 4GB of RAM, serving as the headline feature of this phone. It’s actually the world’s first smartphone that carries 4GB RAM. It is a 64-bit device powered by 2.3GHz Atom Z3580 processor with PowerVR G6430 graphics. On paper, it promises to deliver up to seven times (7X) faster gaming performance than its predecessor (Zenfone 5).
Zenfone 2 has built-in 4G/LTE connectivity for blazingly fast data speeds of up to 150Mbit/s plus 802.11ac Wi-Fi for speedy wireless transfers. This is a dual-micro SIM phone. Other ports include a standard headphone jack on top, which is absolutely CTIA compliant, and a microUSB at the bottom edge.
As already mentioned, there is a 13-megapixel rear autofocus camera with Asus’ PixelMaster technology, a homegrown technology that combines software, hardware and optical design to help users capture better pictures especially in low light conditions. During the South East Asia launch, I have seen the capability of the camera and everything is remarkable. You can see sample photos here.
The camera application is fairly straightforward and easy to use, and includes all the usual setting that you would expect such as white balance, exposure, ISO, and 1080p video capture, and some typical shooting modes are also available including manual, HDR, and panorama.
In the software department, the phone runs Android 5.0 Lollipop with the company’s ZenUI skin on top. Asus has also added some new software features such as ZenMotion which activates certain functions using swipe gestures, and SnapView which allows users to create separate user profiles for public and secured uses as well as Kids Mode.
The Zenfone 2, which was handed to us, has 32GB of storage as well as a microSD card slot for up to 64GB of additional space. It also packs a 3000mAh non-removable battery.
Asuz Zenfone 2 Quick Unboxing Video
Asus Zenfone 2 (ZE551ML, 4GB) Specs
- 5.5-Inch Full HD IPS Display (1080 x 1920 Pixels, 403 ppi)
- Scratch Resistant Corning Gorilla Glass 3
- Android 5.0 Lollipop OS with Zen UI
- Intel Atom Z3580 Chipset
- 2.3GHz Quad Core 64-bit CPU
- PowerVR G6430 GPU
- 4GB of RAM
- 13 Megapixel Autofocus Main Camera with LED Flash
- 5 Megapixel Front Camera
- 16GB/32GB/64GB Internal Storage
- Expandable Up to 64GB via MicroSD
- Dual SIM (Micro + Micro)
- 4G LTE, 3G HSPA+, 2G EDGE and GPRS Networks
- Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi Hotspot
- NFC Support
- Bluetooth 4.0
- GPS with A-GPS and GLONASS
- USB OTG Support
- 3,000mAh Li-Po Battery (Non-removable)
- 152.5 x 77.2 x 3.9 – 10.9mm @ 170 g
- Price: TBA (May 16, 2015)
The Zenfone 2 looks to be a very good choice for those planning to take their mobile experience in to a higher-level without spending a lot of money. There are still lots of incredible things that need to be discovered on this phone – we’ll be doing a full review in the coming days, but as early as now we can undoubtedly say that if you’re looking for a premium device with topnotch performance and yet won’t crack off your pocket, Asus Zenfone 2 could be your new hero!
We’ll be attending the Asus Zenfone 2 Philippines launch at the World Trade Center this Saturday, and if we bump, then let’s talk!