• SPECIFICATIONS
  • OS: Android 4.3 Jelly Bean
  • CPU: 2.0GHz Intel Atom Z2580
  • RAM: 2GB LPDDR2
  • Storage: 16GB, microSD (up to 64GB), 5GB ASUS Webstorage
  • Display: 6-inch (1,280 x 800) HD IPS with ASUS TruVivid technology
  • Network: GSM 850/900/1800/1900MHz, HSPA 850/900/1900/2100MHz
  • Connectivity: WLAN 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, Miracast, microUSB
  • Extras: 13-megapixel Rear Camera, 2-megapixel Front Camera, ASUS SonicMaster technology, Dual-SIM
  • Dimensions: 166.9 x 84.3 x 9.9mm
  • Weight: 196g
  • Pros:
  • Stylish and sturdy build
  • Affordable
  • Good camera
  • Dual SIM
  • Cons:
  • Loudspeaker is tinny
  • Can be hard to hold for some
  • No 4G LTE
  • Benchmark Results
  • AnTuTu: 19,340 points
  • 3DMark (Ice Storm): 6,487 points
  • 3DMark (Ice Storm Extreme):3,637 points
  • 3DMark (Ice Storm Unlimited): 5,737 points

The Largest Source Of Zen

Back in April when ASUS launched the ZenFones in Jakarta, it was quite obvious to us that the Taiwanese powerhouse has really come a long way from their days of just making PC components. The company has put in quite a lot of effort to be one of the top contenders in the smart mobile device segment and if they continue bringing devices like the ZenFone 6 to the table, then they may very well soon be part of the upper echelons in the smartphone market.

With the ASUS Pixelmaster technology, the ZenFone 6’s 13MP rear camera is great to use and produces images that have accurate colours and good amount of detail

With the ASUS Pixelmaster technology, the ZenFone 6’s 13MP rear camera is great to use and produces images that have accurate colours and good amount of detail

The whole idea of the ZenFone line is to give consumers an affordable device that still feels like a premium one and with the ZenFone 6; ASUS have knocked it out of the park. Despite being made out of polycarbonate, the ZenFone 6 feels super sturdy and looks great. Its stylishness is very subtle and we really liked the rounded edges and also the metallic spiral effect on the bottom bezel.

Like most smartphones in this size, the buttons are placed on the sides instead of the top for easy access

Like most smartphones in this size, the buttons are placed on the sides instead of the top for easy access. The buttons also have a good amount of travel and responsiveness

Being the largest of the trio, the ZenFone 6 has a 6-inch display and this could be a fifty-fifty thing for many users as it is a little unwieldy and hard to operate one handed. However, if you like large and clear displays, then the one on the ZenFone 6 won’t disappoint as it is brilliant. It has a good balance between colour saturation and vibrancy and brightness and viewing angles are also good. If you love watching videos or reading on your smartphone, the ZenFone 6 will make those activities enjoyable.

Yes, the ZenFone 6 supports dual SIM cards, which is always handy when it comes to travelling

Yes, the ZenFone 6 supports dual SIM cards, which is always handy when it comes to travelling

Seeing as this is the frontrunner of the ZenFone line, it comes with the best hardware customisation and it shines through as we found the device to be smooth and snappy even when multi-tasking. It produced decent scores in our standard suite of benchmarks and we were able to play graphic intensive games like Dead Trigger 2 and Asphalt 8 with no major problems but on and off there were some noticeable lags.

Probably

Probably one of the main downsides of the ZenFone 6 is its tinny loudspeakers

Another great thing about the ZenFone 6 is its large 3,300mAh battery and combined with Intel’s clever engineering, the device is a power sipper and easily lasted us a full day with medium to heavy usage and slightly more than a day on very light usage. The only downside to the battery is that it is non-removable but that really shouldn’t be an issue.

CHIP CONCLUDE: For a mid-range smartphone and a very attractive price tag, the ASUS ZenFone 6 is definitely one of the best money can buy out there thanks to its great balance of features and performance.

(previously published in issue August 2014)

ASUS ZenFone 6