ASUS ZenFone Selfie Unboxing, First Thoughts

Meet the ASUS ZenFone Selfie, maybe the pinkest phone I’ve ever held. I can’t unsee it in my head. It also comes in blue and white and targets the young who are tired of poor selfies shared on social media. They deserve better. ASUS listened.

But I doubt only the young will get this phone. Hey, I want better selfies, too. You know, for the precious few times that I – anyway, let’s do this.

The contents are few: related literature, charger, charging cable, the Pink phone.

Based on specs, the ZenFone Selfie specializes in producing clear, non-grainy shots from its monster front camera – f2.2 aperture with 88 degree wide angle view plus dual tone flash and a front cam beautification settings so complex it might as well be a selfie manual mode. Wide angle means you can get more people into the frame. Dual tone flash means no more silhouettes shared on Instagram. Beauty mode means you decide whether you want a slight complexion clean up or a change in personality. (Naturally, we wont’ ignore the rear camera in the full review.)

Update 08-29-2015: ASUS has launched new ZenFones, including the Selfie. See them here.

Update 09-11-2015: Read the full review of the ASUS ZenFone Selfie here.

ASUS Zenfone Selfie Specs

5.5-inch full HD IPS display (1920×1080 resolution), 403ppi
Corning Gorilla Glass 4
Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 octa-core processor
Adreno 405 GPU
32GB internal storage, up to 64GB via microSD
13MP rear camera with dual-tone flash and laser auto-focus
13MP front camera with dual-tone flash, 88-degree wide angle lens, f/2.2 aperture
Dual-SIM, Dual standby
WiFi 802.11 b/g/n/ac
Bluetooth 4.0
Android 5.0 Lollipop
3,000mAh Li-Po battery
170 grams

SRP 11,995.00

Update 08-23-2015: There are two versions of the ASUS ZenFone Selfie – 16GB with 2GB RAM and 32GB with 3GB RAM. The 16GB RAM version will be available only in Taiwan. Meanwhile, the 32GB version, which we unboxed, will be available in the Philippines. 

Back cover removed: removable 3,000 mAh battery, dual SIM slots, microSD slot, pink back cover.

Color Options are Perfect for the Target Market

The ZenFone Selfie’s color variants – Pure White, Chic Pink, and Aqua Blue – belong to the cute-sy spectrum, and are bound to attract a lot of people: from kids, to their older sisters, to their mothers. This phone would make a great gift. I posted the pink one on Facebook and most of my female friends went omg gaga over it. Because. Pink.

Subsequent color options, if ASUS is listening, should probably include neon variants, plus orange and violet. 1 out of 4 uncles have a niece that adore violet, believe me. But then the back cover, the part of the ZenFone Selfie that’s actually colored, is removable. So maybe more back cover colors should be made available. Hey, it’s just a thought.

Let’s have a look around the ZenFone Selfie.

  • Front.
  • Back.
  • 13MP F2.0 rear camera, dual-tone flash, laser autofocus.
  • The 13MP F2.2 camera sensor and dual-tone flash eat up a lot of room on the phone's forehead.
  • There is no relief from pink. Pink, pink, pink, pink!


The powered-down specs might be enough

The nerdy Android users will quickly spot the “only” 615 octa-core processor and say it’s not a power house. We’ll see. ASUS packed in 3GB RAM to handle multitasking, and if the target market will not be loading heavy graphic games, if most of what they do is instant messaging and social media and taking and uploading pictures, the specs sheet above might be more than enough. Also, because, Pink. And, the price: the ZenFone Selfie is projected to have a price lower than the ASUS ZenFone 2 ZE551ML and more than half of price tags of the LG G4 and S6 edge+.

We improve on those who came before us

This will be pointed out again, so we might as well get it over with. The ZenFone 2 took design cues from the LG G3 – no buttons on the sides, rear keys, faux metal back. But no laser autofocus and no Optical Image Stabilization (OIS).

The ZenFone Selfie now has laser autofocus, something the ZenFone 2 lacked. Improvements in design is of course innovation, but so are attempts to bring down manufacturing and distribution costs. At a portion of the price of the LG G4, the ZenFone Selfie is poised to offer selfies maybe even better than the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge+.

First boot. Don’t forget that you have 100GB of free Google Drive storage.

But there’s still no Optical Image Stabilization (OIS). I doubt the ZenFone Selfie will be taking bad pictures, because the ZenFone 2, despite having no OIS, took great pictures. The Selfie is an intriguing product. Because now the young crowd can have a great selfie camera without having to let go of one full month’s salary or to use their tuition money to get a flagship phone.

Watch out for our full review and our shoot out versus the iPhone 6 Plus.

[Our full review of the ZenFone Selfie is up and it includes not just a shoot our versus the iPhone 6 Plus but also with the LG G4.]

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Irwin Allen Rivera loves his wife's cooking so much he's now twice the man he used to be. His English essay won a Don Carlos Palanca Memorial Award for Literature in 2012. His philosophical-horror story appeared in Philippine Speculative Fiction 8 (2013). He was managing editor and lead writer of Sites and Symbols 2 (2005), a coffee-table book about buildings in UP Diliman - his alma mater (BA Philosophy; MA Creative Writing continuing). He worked at the UP Diliman Information Office before shifting to web content writing. His sudden fiction, "Notwithstanding Pigs," initially a Friendster testimonial, appeared in Philippines Graphic (2006) and in Very Short Stories for Harried Readers (2007). He used to write for