ASUS ZenFone Series Priced Like Budget Phones Despite Features



While quad and octa cores are “in”, ASUS launches its ZenFone series running only dual cores (it’s about the performance, not the number of cores). While flagship phones are getting massive, ASUS offers three screen sizes – 4, 5, and 6 inches (some of us don’t like big phones). While the rear cameras of budget phones suffer in low light scenes, the rear cameras of the ZenFones 5 and 6 can amp up light sensitivity up to 400% and contrast up to 200%, resulting in clearer shots without flash.

ASUS ZenFone 5 Red



These might be the Droids you’re looking for:

  • ASUS ZenFone 4 Specs

  • ASUS ZenFone 5 Specs

  • ASUS ZenFone 6 Specs

The specs seem just “right” for midrange phones. But the price, for what you get, is a coup d’etat: a message to locally-branded Androids. The ZenFone 4 and 5, for example, run 1GB and 2GB of RAM, respectively, which are not a common sight among budget phones. The ZenFones 5 and 6 both run ASUS’s Pixel Master technology, which is great for low light shooting.

ASUS ZenFone PixelMaster

Above is the pitch-dark low light shooting test box of ASUS, with the ZenFone 5 used to peek into the box with an unlit butterfly inside. With our limited hands on, I tested the ZenFone 5 and it seems to match the Night Mode of my LG G2. Note that the ZenFone 5 is a third of the price of the LG G2. (We have a ZenFone 5 arriving, so stay tuned for our unboxing and full review.)

ASUS ZenFone Selfie

Above is a feature of the Pixel Master technology present in all ZenFones: Selfie Mode. This feature allows you to use the higher resolution rear camera for selfies instead of the front camera. (Of course you can still use the front camera for selfies if you want to.) What happens is that, using the front camera, you decide how many faces will be included in the selfie shot. Then you turn the phone around, so that you’ll be facing the rear camera. A series of sounds indicates when the shot is ready and when it’s been taken.

What About Those “Only” Dual Cores?

Price, the usual barrier, is now a non-issue. But the “only” dual core Intel processor might be. To address that, ASUS and Intel showed benchmark results of several quad core Androids units against the ZenFone 5 and 6:


ASUS ZenFone Benchmark Test


ASUS ZenFone Benchmark Test


ASUS ZenFone Benchmark Test


The ZenFones feel good in your hand – soft matte finish on the back and available in various colors. The display is sharp, its colors punchy, the contrasts clear. The ASUS ZenUI feels polished: you might not end up shopping for Android launchers.

ASUS ZenFone 4 White

The ASUS ZenFones now are available at and via authorized resellers.

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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