June 13, 2019 By Lisa
For the ZenFone 6, Asus didn’t need to create a telephone similar to all others. By addressing the core expertise in a brand new manner, the ZenFone 6 just isn’t solely some of the attention-grabbing Asus telephones of the time, but additionally some of the versatile.
I’ve been utilizing ZenFone 6 for a number of weeks and I additionally visited Asus in Taipei (Taiwan) earlier than launching to see how ZenFone 6 was developed. Sure, the rocking digicam is the characteristic that makes the headlines, however the remainder of the telephone is simply as attention-grabbing and weird. He’s a extremely valued and extremely competent companion who makes me passionate about the way forward for Asus smartphones.
Idea and design
The ZenFone 6 has been designed round 4 ideas: a widescreen viewing expertise, lengthy battery life, quick, easy efficiency, and photographic creativity. Bold objectives, however hardly distinctive. However Asus delivered them in an uncommon manner.
The curved again of the telephone, the Gorilla Glass three in 3D, blends into the metallic chassis, whereas the Gorilla Glass 6 above the display screen is happy with the bodywork. This method masks the dimensions of the telephone each visually and while you maintain it. If, like me, you admire the distinctiveness of the Asus ROG telephone, the ZenFone 6 additionally has its personal identification. but it surely's extra usable every day than the gaming telephone. Does the massive 5,000 mAh battery make the telephone too large and too thick? With a thickness of 9.1 mm – sure – however with 190 grams, it’s comparatively gentle in comparison with its opponents.
The 6.Four-inch LCD display screen with out a notch has a Full HD + decision and, though Asus calls it NanoEdge, the panels have a thickness much like that of an Apple iPhone XR or from a Galaxy S10e. It additionally has a barely bigger "chin" or decrease bezel. It's good high quality, however I miss an AMOLED at all times on. As well as, the LCD just isn’t very brilliant within the daylight and the auto brightness reacts slowly, which makes it inadequate to compensate for speedy modifications.
A widescreen viewing expertise, lengthy battery life, quick, easy efficiency and photographic creativity.
At first, a background noise brought on by the digicam module whereas the telephone was vibrating irritated me. I do know it's the digicam module, as a result of while you maintain it down, the telephone vibrates usually. The digicam module doesn’t transfer, however it isn’t tight sufficient towards the physique when saved in its compartment. Over time, I’ve seen much less, but it surely makes the telephone stronger in vibrate mode.
When the module tilts, the motion may be very mechanical: you possibly can hear and even really feel the operation of the gears. While you activate it within the digicam app, the motion is easy and effectively cushioned. In the event you drag the digicam view button up and down, you possibly can management the digicam angle your self and even the velocity of the movement. He feels effectively conceived.
I like utilizing the ZenFone 6 loads, however aside from the rocker digicam, it doesn’t appear like a "fashionable" telephone, in that it's fairly thick and includes a sensor fingerprint oriented in direction of the again. This isn’t a foul factor, however in comparison with telephones just like the OnePlus 7 Professional, the ZenFone 6's design is a step backwards.
The motorized rotating digicam system is the characteristic that everybody will discuss. To facilitate the display screen with out notching, Asus has interpreted its personal motorized video digicam. In the back of the telephone, the twin lens digicam appears like some other, however to take selfies, it rocks on high of the telephone. Virtually something you are able to do with the rear digicam, you can even do it for selfies.
A 48-megapixel Sony IMX586 photograph sensor is the star of the ZenFone 6's lens community, plus an ultra-wide 13 megapixel lens, all housed in a splendidly complicated package deal of ultra-durable, ultra-thin liquid metallic. light-weight. How complicated is it? There are 13 speeds inside offering the torque wanted to rotate the digicam. In an atypical contextual digicam, there are often solely 5 speeds.
The liquid metallic has been chosen for its sturdiness as a result of it’s 4 instances stronger than stainless-steel and the mechanical motion has been examined at 150,000 cycles. It is usually very clever. For instance, it really works with the proximity sensor in order that it doesn’t open or shut unintentionally when it’s towards the facet of your face – helpful when you have lengthy hair and you do not need them to be snapped up by the mechanism – and the gyroscope robotically closes the digicam when it detects that the telephone is falling, similar to the OnePlus 7 Professional's contextual digicam.
Andy Boxall / Digital Traits
What does it appear like? The use is a lot enjoyable. The rotation is 180 levels and you’ll cease it at any time utilizing an on-screen slider and even the quantity keys. I like automated panorama mode, the place the digicam itself strikes to seize the scene, quite than comply with the directions on the display screen. It even follows the actions so you possibly can comply with a transferring topic with out worrying about trying into the viewfinder. Lastly, Asus has added its personal overlay of pop-up digicam controls so you should utilize the characteristic in apps like Instagram and Twitter.
All these options might be ineffective if the standard just isn’t on the rendezvous. After a number of software program updates, the digicam has improved considerably because the earlier model that I had tried. The HDR setting is efficient, permitting you to take nice footage underneath troublesome lighting, whereas the Night time mode takes footage brilliant, clear and with out blur. It’s versatile with 2x zoom and extensive angle mode. Define detection in portrait mode is great.
Saturation ranges aren’t too excessive, though some nighttime pictures could also be a bit too easy, and colour accuracy might have been poor in earlier variations of the software program, equivalent to yellow and inexperienced ranges. Selfies outperform most different telephones due to the standard of the lenses and the software program. They’re actually unbelievable with a number of particulars and a strong portrait mode. A magnificence mode will be managed in portrait mode however not in regular mode, and though some have seen that it provides some negative effects this fashion, that has not occurred.
The digicam takes engaging and shareable images, and presents nice versatility, whether or not it’s going through backwards or forwards.
There are some disadvantages to the digicam. It doesn’t embody optical picture stabilization, however solely digital stabilization, as a result of the additional weight would have considerably affected the dimensions and weight of the motorized module. Unlocking the face is activated, but it surely's not automated – you must slide the display screen to make it work, which is slower and fewer handy than different programs.
The ZenFone 6's digicam takes engaging and shareable images, and presents nice versatility, whether or not it’s going through backwards or forwards.
Software program and efficiency
ZenUI has been relegated to historical past, and as a replacement is added a clear Android expertise, nearly much like Pixel. Mainly, there are a number of velocity enhancements, from software cleanup to reminiscence administration, to a shorter preliminary launch time. The work has paid off: it’s quick, fluid and there’s no irritating slowing down when switching between purposes.
The easy expertise on Android means that you’ve got a sliding software drawer, a scrolling notification display screen and Google feed, to the left of the house display screen. The applying icons are designed in a constant manner, the design is pleasantly constant and there are only some preinstalled Asus purposes. It's nonetheless customizable and Asus has added some cool options – for instance, I switched to the brand new darkish mode created by Asus and I didn’t return.
Andy Boxall / Digital Traits
ZenUI ZenFone 6 is a big step ahead in gaining the general enchantment of the telephone, and it's glorious. It’s extremely near utilizing Android on a pixel, it’s fluid, quick and dependable for many. It crashed a number of instances – particularly within the Gmail app, oddly sufficient – however that's it. ZenUI is an actual motive to purchase the ZenFone 6 on telephones with extra complicated and extremely personalized consumer interfaces. Asus additionally despatched updates of my first analysis mannequin, the third one arriving on the time of scripting this evaluate. It's good to see such a dedication: you’ll not discover spot-updates on comparable-priced telephones, such because the Moto Z4.
No compromise was made on the specs. The Snapdragon 855 processor is inside with eight GB of RAM and as much as 256 GB of space for storing. Asus labored exhausting to rethink the circuit board by making a two-piece card, in order that it may very well be inserted right into a three-slot SIM tray with sufficient room for 2 SIM playing cards and a MicroSD card. That is very welcome, and extra preferable than having to decide on between storage and a second SIM card.
Listed below are the benchmark outcomes (these accomplished with Asus' AI Enhance characteristic, which promised to enhance benchmark outcomes, in parentheses):
AnTuTu 3DBench: 361,821 (383,158)
Geekbench Four CPU: 3520 single-core; 11,141 multi-core
3DMark Sling Shot Excessive: Four,936 (Vulkan)
I didn’t come throughout a state of affairs the place the ZenFone 6 lacks energy or just isn’t nice to make use of; the benchmark scores show its prowess, because the AnTuTu base rating is the third highest rating we've seen to date, under the OnePlus 7 Professional and the iPad Air 2019.
Battery and safety
Asus has been given a number of hassle to elucidate to Digital Traits why it had made some selections on the ZenFone 6. It includes a fingerprint sensor on the again and never on the display screen. A sensor constructed into the monitor as a result of it will have been tailored to the massive battery and the three.5mm headphone port. not possible. The rear sensor is a confirmed methodology of securing a smartphone. It’s quick and dependable right here, but it surely doesn’t comply with the most recent design traits. The ZenFone 6 appears dated due to that.
The 5000mAh battery is great. Our ongoing video take a look at on YouTube, which implies that the Huawei P30 Professional, which has a smaller capability battery, has returned solely 12 hours and 37 minutes, is extremely highly effective on a regular basis. Even on the busiest days, it by no means fell under 20% and, with gentle use, typically ended up at over 50%.
Two days of cautious use are simply potential, and I even had a weekend the place I had forgotten a charger, I switched to airplane mode at evening and I at all times had the ability to make use of it usually with Google Maps steerage on the second day.
To cost, it’s essential to plug it in as a result of there isn’t any wi-fi cost. Asus says that this has an influence on the battery life, which additionally explains the minimal charging time of 18W. That is one thing we didn’t discover fairly true in our analysis. Be that as it could, Asus has chosen to deal with these points with its bigger capability battery as a result of the prolonged use time reduces the necessity for recharging so usually, or so shortly.
It really works. Battery anxiousness just isn’t an issue with ZenFone 6.
Worth, assure and availability
The ZenFone 6 prices 500 euros and is now accessible in Europe. American and British variations are coming, and Asus has knowledgeable Digital Traits that the worth of ZenFone 6 can be set at $ 500. It’s doubtless that it’s going to solely be accessible on the Asus web site and different retail companions, quite than by a service. The ultimate launch date in america is unknown.
The guarantee particulars might be accessible on the exit, but when it’s a ROG telephone, wait 12 months and canopy manufacturing defects, however not misuse or water harm.
The ZenFone 6 embodies all that’s nice with smartphones in 2019. It doesn’t comply with the traits set by Apple and Samsung, it doesn’t solely undertake the options chosen by different producers and doesn’t repeat the errors which have affected the ZenFone fashions prior to now. Asus took a step again, relaxed and contemplated what he needed to do to be aggressive this yr. The result’s the ZenFone 6, and it's very good.
Is there a greater various?
At $ 500, the Asus ZenFone 6 is an effective deal; however there are another low cost telephones to contemplate before you purchase it. Within the US, the OnePlus 6T at $ 550 is its greatest and closest competitor in value, however the Google Pixel 3a at $ 400 presents an excellent digicam and software program expertise for a barely lower cost . Spend a bit extra to get the $ 750 OnePlus 7 Professional for its beautiful display screen and ultra-modern look.
Within the UK, if the ZenFone 6 reaches a value of £ 500, the OnePlus 7 500-pound is its direct competitor, with the superb Xiaomi Mi 9 at about the identical value. The Honor 20 Professional ought to arrive on the finish of July, or a bit earlier, and its value would be the identical. All supply extra options and extra energy than the 400-pound Google Pixel 3a, which isn’t as precious within the UK.
How lengthy will it final?
This telephone just isn’t strong, so you must watch out if you need it to final. There isn’t a IP ranking for water resistance, however Asus has said that it is protected against rain and normal moisture. The physique is made from glass and I managed to interrupt the again of my telephone after a really slight fall. There’s a polycarbonate case included within the field, and I like to recommend utilizing it.
In any other case, the telephone will simply last more than the length of a two-year contract as a result of it options the most recent processor, present software program help and an revolutionary and enjoyable digicam.
Must you purchase it?
Sure. The Asus ZenFone 6 delivers the efficiency, battery life and software program expertise we would like from an excellent smartphone in 2019, at a really aggressive value. As well as, the flip digicam just isn’t a gadget and has some attention-grabbing options. The ZenFone 6 simply resists in 2019, even among the many severe smartphone contest of this yr.