The Zenfone 2 is the successor to the very popular budget king Asus Zenfone 5, that made it’s debut back in 2014. The Zenfone 2 is also considered the “The World’s First 4 GB Smartphone”, and with that a lot of Gadget Enthusiasts including myself got interested. Consequently, Asus never labeled the Zenfone 2 as a Flagship, even though the specs say otherwise. They also regard the phone to be a budget or consumer grade phone, which is probably the reason why the Zenfone Lineup has been a huge success.
PixelMaster Camera and 400% Low Light Performance
The Zenfone lineup has been good especially in the Low Light Performance, and even so rivaling big name and more expensive brands in the market. Asus patented PixelMaster Camera shows its power with the new Zenfone 2, bringing more customization and options for better Photography. Asus also claims 400% more low light sensitivity, which is true with their new Zen 2 models. Asus also includes editing software for both pictures and Videos and also other apps to easily share these pictures on Social.
Just like the Zenfone 5, the new Zenfone 2 comes with 2 versions. There are actually 3, but i will be covering the 2 main variants here.
The Zenfone 2 (ZE551ML), is the fastest model and comes with the touted 4 GB RAM and Intel Atom Z3580 Quad Core processor. The model also flaunts a 1080p display. Other name for this is the Asus Zenfone 2 Deluxe Edition. Of course, this version would be more pricey.
The Zenfone 2 (ZE550ML), a cheaper and a tone down version, it only has 2 GB RAM and a slightly lower clocked Intel Atom Z3560, 1.8GHz Quad Core Processor.
It wouldn’t be Zenfone without the bloatware, and it’s not a joke, Asus preloaded the Zen 2 with plenty of apps (some usable, some aren’t). Unfortunately, you can’t delete these apps at your discretion, which is one of my flaws to an already great phone.
Improve Battery Life and Design Changes
The Zenfone 5’s subpar battery life gets a boost on the new Zen 2, equipped with a non-removable 3000mAh battery, the phone is able to boost endurance way past it’s predecessor. Although this value depends on the users, i normally get around the whole day with a single charge, but i had to limit my usage on the phone. 4G LTE and gaming (heats up) seems to drain the battery a lot faster than normal. But for texting and calls, typical usage time still stands.
In terms of design, there is a definite upgrade here, but it still sticks to the same design. One major change is the placement of the volume rocker keys at the back, another is the Power Button on the top of the device. I don’t really mind rear Volume keys, but the Power button placement for me is unconventional. Considering it is a Phablet with a 5.5 inch display, it can be quite a hassle reaching for this button every time. Anyway, the overall build quality has improve dramatically, you still have interchangeable back cover, but has now become more solidly built.
NFC and other notable features
NFC has become a standard on the Zenfone 2, also the phone supports Dual Band WiFi which is a great plus. In terms of 4G LTE Connectivity, because of the multiple variants available, the frequencies depend greatly on where the phone is released. You can find a US version, CN version, International version etc…
Still the Best Value Smartphone yet
The Asus Zenfone 2 proudly carries the torch as a the “King of the Budget Smartphones”. A title held by the Zenfone 2. Although there are shortcomings, it is greatly outweigh by how versatile the phone is, and how good it is. The phone not only excels in Features but Performance as well, and even beating Top Tier Names in the process. The Zen 2 is targeted to the average consumer and thus that is why it’s still gaining ground.
Note: you can compare to this to other phones in the category here: Smartphone Guide