At MWC 2018 in Barcelona Spain, Asus formally unveiled the new ZenFone 5 a mid-range smartphone with a high-end twin named ZenFone 5z, Both of these handsets are identical in every angle and in every sense until it comes to the processor, RAM and storage. Asus makes use of AI technology as the new highlights for the fifth generation ZenFone devices. The handset is built with a full metal frame sandwiched by Corning Gorilla Glass on the front and on the back. This provides a striking, glossy finish that projects a sense of premier and elegance.
The Asus ZenFone 5|5z has a fairly unique display ever introduced in the ZenFone series with its 19:9 Aspect ratio full screen IPS display in Full-HD+ resolution with a familiar notch on top, this simply is an attempt to mimic iPhone X’s notch but the one on the ZenFone 5 is smaller and doesn’t really have the 3D face scanning tech that powers the iPhone X FaceID. However the Zenfone 5 display notch still houses some important sensors and its front facing camera.
The display is actually bright with 500-nit of screen brightness and one can’t deny that it is actually gorgeous to look at. Overall the display covers 90% of the entire front thanks to smaller bezels around. Asus could have stretched the display all the way down but it didn’t which results to a small lip at the bottom.
The ZenFone 5|5z comes with a trio of cameras from the front and on the back. The front is an 8 Megapixel sensor with an f/2.0 Aperture and 84-degree wide-angle lens. The back on the other hand has dual cameras and is position the way one would see it from the iPhone X and comprises a 12 Megapixel main sensor with f/1.8 Aperture, 4-Axis OIS, Phase Detection AF and an 83-degree field-of-view. A secondary sensor of an unknown resolution adds a 120-degree wide-angle lens with instant camera switching feature. The twin camera sensors are supported by a dual-tone LED flash.
The Camera on the ZenFone 5|5z features AI Photography features with 16 AI Scene Detections, AI Photo Learning, Portrait mode and Beautification. It comes with Pro mode with support for RAW format with up to 32 seconds of long exposure. With AI, Asus can stitch images taken from the main camera module to create a stunning 48 Megapixel image with sharp and fine details. It also has Panorama support and Time Lapse with power saving mode. 4K video recording and slow motion videos at 120fps in 1080p and 240fps in 720p. Asus has its own custom and animated emoji’s too called Zenmoji’s.
The handset only supports Nano SIM on its hybrid dual-SIM tray and supports LTE radios on both slots. Other connectivity features includes: Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 5.0, NFC, GPS with A-GPS/GLONASS/BDS support. Thankfully, it has a USB-C connector and everybody’s favorite 3.5mm Audio jack is here to stay.
While these two devices seems to be identical, they differ two in the following areas: The ZenFone 5 is powered by a mid-range Qualcomm Snapdragon 635 chipset based on a 14nm process and has an 8-core 64-bit processor with Adreno 509 graphics processor. It has either 4GB or 64GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. The ZenFone 5z on the other hand is equipped with a high-end Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 chipset based on the latest 10nm process with a 8-core 64-bit processor with graphics on the handset is handled by Adreno 630. RAM options for the ZenFone 5z are either 4GB/6GB and 8GB with internal storage space at 64GB/128GB and 256GB respectively. Before we forget, both devices supports microSD cards of up to 2TB in capacity plus there’s a 100GB of storage space for free (on the first year) with Google drive.
The ZenFone 5|5z features stereo speakers with dual-amps and there’s a fingerprint sensor at the back. It runs Android 8.0 (Oreo) with Asus ZenUI 5.0 overlays and is kept by a 3300mAh battery with AI charging that increases the lifespan of the battery and of course fast charging capabilities.
The ZenFone 5|5z will be available in Meteor Silver and Midnight Blue color options with pricing only available for the ZenFone 5z currently that starts at £500 or around $700. Prices for the ZenFone 5 though is not out as of yet.