Asus Zenfone 2(4GB RAM) Hands-On; Initial Impressions

After so much anticipation and hype, Asus had finally launched the Zenfone 2 Smartphone in India last month. Zenfone 2 is the world’s first 4GB Ram smartphone Although there many other 4GB Ram smartphone launches since then Zenfone 2 is first among them. The device is supposed to be next iteration of last year’s Zenfone series. Competing with some major names that fall under the same price segment the Asus zenfone 2 offers some best in class hardware and software features. Finally, we got to spend some time with the Zenfone 2 and here’re our initial impression and thoughts

Asus has very much emphasized the design of the smartphone is focusing on the build quality, Zenfone 2 has also bagged the best design award for the year 2015. Well, we think that the zenfone 2 build quality is decent, with a lot of design changes made. Starting off with the volume rockers that are now shifted to back to the device under the primary camera taking a cue from LG’s G2/G3, not that we are complaining but it’s something worth mentioning. The power on/off button is also being transferred from side to top of the device that is accompanied with 3.5mm audio jack, Asus might have left the power button on the side reaching out to the upper part of the device becomes difficult at times. Back is mad up of plastic though it gives the impression of metal with its silver coating.

The device is a slightly curved on the back giving a right amount of grip to hold in hands without any problem. Unlike the last years Zenfone series that had sharp edges, the new Zenfone 2 has rounded edges making it comfortable while using it. The problem comes once you place the device on an even surface. The device weighs around 170 g with 152.5 x 77.2 x 10.9 mm dimensions.

Talking about the build, On the front, we have the Asus branding, the usual set of proximity/ambient light sensors, the 5-megapixel selfie camera that can record/capture at 720p resolution. Tiny LED notification light, and three touch type capacitive buttons that do give haptic feedback when press but are not backlit making it difficult in dark and night times.  On the back, we have the 13-megapixel primary camera with Dual LED flash and OIS, Volume rocker. These buttons are made of plastic and offer a good amount of feedback when pressed, although you might want to get used to them. Finally, the rectangle shaped speaker grills for better audio output. The back is removable, but the 3000mAh battery isn’t, Dual SIM slots of which the primary SIM supports 4G LTE and a MicroSD card slot that supports up to 64GB. There is nothing towards the sides(right & left) of the device as the volume and power buttons are being shifted their placement.

The Asus Zenfone 2 packs a 5.5-inches 1080p display with 403PPi. The 1080p panel is pretty much decent and it sufficient. The white balance is accurate, and the viewing angles are at its best. Sunlight legibility is not that high so are the brightness levels. Corning Gorilla glass 3 protects the display from scratches and sudden drops.  What strikes us the most is the slim bezels giving more screen to display ratio.

On the Internals, we have the Intel Atom Z3560 Chipset, which is clocked at 2.3GHz Quad-Core processor with PowerVR G6430 GPU, coupled with 4GB Ram of Ram and 32/64/128GB internal storage with SD card expansion. Performance is the area where the Zenfone 2 will impress more than it does than the hardware. Running on Android 5.0.2 lollipop with Zen U.I on top giving most of the lollipop sweetness. But the complaining part would be the lot of bloatware other than the usual Google apps that come pre-installed with the device though storage isn’t an issue, but it would have been good if Asus has limited the unwanted app. Performance is snappy with no hint of lag or hangs what so ever and can run pretty much anything you throw at it. The 3000mah battery can get you through for a single of moderate to light usage, but you might need to charge it twice if your heavy smartphone user as the Intel chips are always blamed for Avg battery life.

Having said that when we compare with last year’s zenfone series, the all new zenfone 2 gets a significant design upgrade. The specifications are on par with a flagship device, well at least on paper as of now. Priced at 19,999 for 32GB variant and 23,000 for the 64GB variant is worth spending your money on the device? well that the big question in front of us. We are still testing out the device and will come up with Full In-depth Camera and Full review very soon so stay tuned with us.