Asus presents the third installment of its flagship. Is it a phone that can compete with smartphones priced around £1200?
Asus is rather not associated with smartphones, even though it has been engaged in their production for some time. Mobile devices of this manufacturer, although solid, do not enjoy too much interest. Will this change the new Zenfone 3?
Already at first glance you can see that the company decided to break with the previous style and bet on modern, fashionable solutions. Thus, the case is made of a combination of glass and aluminum, and the front and back panels are rounded at the edges. The body is somewhat reminiscent of the Samsung Galaxy S6.
The phone feels very pleasant in the hand, is well balanced and has a handy dimensions. Also deserves praise for the quality of workmanship and fit the casing, which is close to perfection. On the back panel, just below the heavily protruding camera lens, is the fingerprint reader. The sensor itself works well, but due to its unusual profiling, it sometimes happens that the finger is not read correctly. A backlight for the touch-sensitive buttons below the screen would also be useful.
Screen and multimedia
The Zenfone 3 is based on a 5.2-inch IPS display with Full HD resolution. The image it presents looks good, but the colors lack a bit of saturation. This is especially noticeable if we compare it with any display made with AMOLED technology. Praise is due, however, for the scale of brightness control, which should satisfy the needs of even the most demanding users. The maximum is almost enormous (600 nits), which guarantees very good visibility, even in bright sunlight.
The sound comes from a single speaker, which is located on the bottom edge of the case. It is of average quality, but should be sufficient for basic use.
Camera and battery
16 megapixels, PixelMaster 3.0 technology and a lens with f/2.0 aperture – this is what the Zenfone 3 can boast about its camera. How about the photo quality? It’s unexpectedly good – photos are detailed enough, have colors close to real life, and are mostly correctly exposed. There is already some visible noise in night conditions, but the frames are still clear and nice.
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When it comes to video, the Zenfone 3 records in 4K resolution at most, but it definitely feels best in Full HD at 30 frames per second. Videos present a level similar to photos, which is quite good. To the ideal, they lack just a little more fluidity.
The Zenfone 3 is equipped with a 2650 mAh battery. Unfortunately, such a size does not guarantee performance at a high level, but only correct. With moderate use, you can count on a maximum of one day of work without charging.
Components and system
Up to this point, you could think that the Zenfone 3 is a high-end smartphone. Unfortunately, the chipset used reveals that Asus’ best handset still belongs only to the mid-range, prestigious, but still mid-range. For performance is responsible Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 with Adreno 506 graphics chip, all supported by 4 GB of RAM.
The performance of the phone is really fully sufficient, virtually in any situation. We are also talking about demanding games, with which there is no problem. However, this is not the same level as in the case of the Galaxy S7, or at least the S6. Here are the results of synthetic tests: Antutu – 63,430 points, Quadrant Standard – 39,160 points, 3DMark SlingShot – 465 points.
On board there is Android 6.0, which is covered by a characteristic interface ZenUI 3.0. Extremely powerful overlay, which, yes, is equipped with a huge amount of features, but that makes it easy to get lost in it, and the load on the processor from the start is much higher than in the case of a pure system. Reservations can also be made about the visual side, which seems to be not very serious and does not match the external appearance of the phone.