ASUS has taken the Indian smartphone industry very serious this time around and have started pushing an affordable smartphone in every segment. Out of three smartphones released recently, ASUS Zenfone 6 has been a cost effective and a premium phablet. Here is what we got to say about ASUS Zenfone 6 review.
The term ‘Phablet’ is a mix of a ‘phone’ and a ‘tablet’, which has a display screen sized above 5 inches and below 7 inches. And so the all new ASUS Zenfone 6 falls under the category. As we said before, ASUS released three smartphones in three segments. Out of which, Zenfone 5 looks like a winner for that price tag. Will its bigger variant do better? Let’s find out.
Zenfone 6 Specifications
We have seen many phablets by Indian manufacturers who packs a low end spec, which spoils the power of a smartphone. Comparing to those, ASUS Zenfone 6 is a highly specced device and a best in range phablet.
- 6″ IPS touchscreen (1280×720 pixels, 245ppi) with Gorilla Glass 3
- 2GHz Intel Atom Z2580 processor
- 2GB RAM
- 16GB internal memory, expandable MicroSD slot up to 64GB
- 13MP rear camera with LED flash, 2MP front camera
- Dual-SIM (GSM+GSM)
- 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS, microUSB 2.0
- 3300mAh battery
- Android 4.3 (upgradable to Android 4.4 Kit Kat) with Zen UI
ASUS Zenfone 6 is a power packed device. As mentioned in the above spec sheet, it runs on a 2×2 aka multi-core Intel Atom Z2580 processor 2GHz with Intel Hyper-Threading Technology. Backed by a 2GB of RAM provides a great experience, best performance and power efficiency.
On the storage section, this device comes with 16GB internal memory with an expandable card slot supporting up to 64GB. The 6-inch HD display is of the IPS variety and also rocks Corning Gorilla Glass 3 protection. Display sensitivity is increased with new ASUS technologies that make it possible to use the device while wearing gloves.
BUILD QUALITY / ERGONOMICS
Being a phablet, the Asus Zenfone 6 is naturally a behemoth to hold it in one hand. The matte finish on the back lets you get a good grip, but for most people, it’s going to be too big to hold naturally. However, the handset comes with a feature called one-hand mode similar to what we see on Samsung devices.
The device comes with a regular IPS display with Corning Gorilla glass 3. The glossy surface is a fingerprint magnet. The front panel features three touch buttons for Home, Menu and Back, earpiece and the front-facing camera. The touch buttons don’t come with a backlight functionality. During night use, it will be very hard to find these buttons.
On the right, there are a power button and volume rocker. Nothing on left. The USB and the audio jack take their places on the bottom and top respectively. On the rear panel, a 13MP camera and a flash are seen on the top, while the bottom sports a large speaker grill.
SOFTWARE OR OPERATING SYSTEM
The Zenfone 6 runs on a heavily customized version of Android. Currently running on Android 4.3 and upgradable to Android 4.4 which will be released in a few days. Overall, the OS looks clean and yes, there are few noticeable bugs which need to be fixed soon.
DISPLAY AND UI
The 6 inch phablet packs an IPS HD screen, delivering a maximum brightness of 400 nits for best readability even when outdoors. Corning Gorilla Glass 3 improves native scratch resistance up to 4x, compared to standard Al-Si Glass and 10x compared to Na-Si Glass.
Being a phablet, it is a bit too large to hold in one hand and for your figures to reach the corners of the phone. To overcome this issue, ASUS has implemented a one-hand mode, which will make the user interface comfortable by providing options to simulate the screen to 4.3-inch, 4.5-inch and 4.7-inch. Also, there is an option to choose a left or right hand usage.
The Zenfone 6 comes with an all new Zen UI. Asus has done some tremendous work on the UI section. They have completely revamped the skin and went ahead with a flatter design for the theme. This looks clean and crisp!
Similar to Zenfone 5, this handset also carries an ASUS’s all new PixelMaster camera technology build in a combination of software, hardware and optical design to deliver incredible image quality. The 13 MP rare camera on Zenfone 6 provide a high quality images of resolution 3264 x 2448 pixels with Autofocus and LED flash. You can also record high quality MPEG4 videos – 1080p @30fps and 720p @ 60fps.
Camera of this smartphone comes with hell lot of options. You can click a crisp picture under sunlight and a vivid night shot. It has inbuilt beatification mode, you can click GIF images and a lot more. Yeah, there is a selfie mode for self-clicking freaks. You do have a special night mode for shots to be taken in the dark, but the amount of noise in them is a put-off.
Similar to the camera’s PixelMaster technology, ASUS has also built a new technology in its sound system called SonicMaster. ASUS SonicMaster technology is a new audio optimization technology developed by the ASUS Golden Ear Team. It is a combination of superior hardware and software designed to deliver the ultimate sound experience.
So does the clarity of the Zenfone 6 is really nice. Even the in-ear headphones provide a greater clarity for music lovers. Videos play smooth and we had no trouble playing full HD videos. The Zenfone 6 supports all video formats without any issues.
The Zenfone 6 comes with non-removable 3300 mAh battery which promises to last a day for most users. Under a heavy usage and switching between 3G and WiFI, the handset ran for around 16-18 hours on a single charge. That’s great for a phablet for sure.
Also, the inbuilt power optimization options will help you get a longer battery life.
ASUS’s Zen UI provides a numerous options. Something similar to Xiaomi MIUI. The notification panel comes with lot many toggle switches. These can be edited of course. Remote link app turns your device into wireless touchpad, a keyboard and a controller of PowerPoint and windows media player on your PC.
Miracast lets you cast your device on your big monitors. Easy mode provides you with a friendly yet intuitive interface experience with simple layout and core functions. Something similar to lite mode on Xiaomi Mi3.
PERFORMANCE AND BENCHMARKS
We used the Zenfone 6 for almost a week and it ran flawlessly without any issues. No lags and freezes while playing high games. We did put the device under heavy usage and ran the benchmarks on it. It scored decently and can’t expect it to be better.
Most people prefer a large-screen smartphone, but find it difficult to operate it using one hand. However, the ASUS Zenfone provides comfortability by adjusting the screen to adapt to the user preference with a smaller size.
Camera is okay, battery backup is impressive and display quality id pretty good. All-in-all, a device is a worthy smartphone for a price tag of INR 16,999. If the size is one worry, you can always switch to its smaller variant Zenfone 5.
Where to Buy?