ASUS ZenFone 3 (ZE552KL) Android Smartphone Review

Smartphones are plenty these days and many of them aren’t impressive, suffice to say the ASUS ZenFone 3 falls under the impressive range of smartphones I come across.

I wasn’t particularly impressed with the ZenFone 2 thought it’s the phone with best price to specs ratio. The ZenFone 3 now comes in as the replacement and my goodness it looks totally different, the plastic case ZenFone 2 now looks like a toy when compared to the sleek and stylish looking ZenFone 3.

ASUS ZenFone 3 Android Smartphone Review

The ASUS ZenFone 3 sports a Full HD (1920 X 1080) screen using Super IPS+ display, it has up to 600 nits brightness while the design has a very thin 2.1mm resulting in only 77.3% screen to body ratio.

One thing I love is that it looks glossy all over, after all it’s encased in contoured Corning Gorilla Glass and I’ve been using it for months with no scratch in sight. In fact it’s so glossy that it slipped once off a 4 feet rack and I saw only a very tiny unnoticeable dent at a corner – amazing build quality!

ASUS ZenFone 3 Android Smartphone Review

The rear camera is neat
– 16 megapixels PixelMaster 3.0 camera with 1.12 ┬Ám pixel size
– f/2.0 aperture
– 6-element Largan lens with sapphire lens protection
– Ultra-fast 0.03s instant focus and subject tracking TriTech AF system (2nd-gen laser auto-focus, phase detection auto-focus and continuous auto-focus)
– 4-axis, 4 stops optical image stabilization
– Color correction (RGB) sensor for the best white balance and natural-looking colors
– Real-time HDR
– Dual-LED real tone flash
– 32 sec long exposure
– Dual-LED real tone flash

That aside, there’s a finger print sensor right below the camera – use it to unlock the phone or assign certain functions to it.

ASUS ZenFone 3 Android Smartphone Review

But specs is all but text – what you should be more interested is the output, right? I did publish an article on how I used the ZenFone 3 for food photography.

I also took it for a spin for interior photography and cosplay / portrait photography.

You can tell that I’m very pleased with the output.

That aside the ZenFone 3 uses USB Type-C connection for charging / file transfer.

ASUS ZenFone 3 Android Smartphone Review

Lastly the ASUS ZenFone 3 supports dual SIM cards with 2G/3G/4G connection, the first SIM is Micro while the second SIM is Nano, however the second SIM shares the tray for MicroSD card. Speaking of storage, the ZenFone 3 has 64GB storage with support of up to 2TB expandable storage.

The Benchmarks

For those interested in numbers, here they are.

3D Mark

ASUS ZenFone 3 Android Smartphone Review


ASUS ZenFone 3 Android Smartphone Review


ASUS ZenFone 3 Android Smartphone Review


ASUS ZenFone 3 Android Smartphone Review

User Experience

The ZenFone 3 is “Build for Photography” and suffice to say, it does the job well. Have a look at links / videos I posted earlier. I think there’s nothing more to say, it’s an improvement from the previous model, they now use the IMX298 sensor from Sony and the image output speaks a lot.

As for battery life the ZenFone 3 is just super duper amazing, it took me hours of running Asphalt Nitro just to drain it. The ZenFone 3 runs on a Qualcomm SnapDragon 625 processor and it has a 3000mAh battery, charging up about 50% in 70 minutes. Having it serve as a Wi-Fi hotspot was a pleasure as the ZenFone 3 is power efficient, behaving pretty much like a powerbank with Wi-Fi capability.

I have criticized the ZenFone 2’s horrible design of placing the volume button at the back of the phone and I’m glad that ASUS realized the design flaw and decided to have the volume button returned to the side again.

The fingerprint sensor works great too, it response very fast when I tap it to unlock the phone. Using the fingerprint sensor for launching the camera and taking photos work great too.

The Verdict

The ASUS ZenFone 3 retails at RM 1,699 – definitely worth the price when you consider how beautiful it looks, the great specs it has and how well it performs.

goldfries recommended