In the era of flagships and budget beauties, Asus has made quite an impression with its mind-boggling product range. The company first swayed us with the super-cool ZenFones, and now, it is doing the same thing again by bringing heavily equipped phones for the present generation of tech-savvy users. That’s right, the ZenFones we love are back and this time, they’re much better and faster than any other player in the contest !
ZenFone 3, the leader of the pack, comes with two other variants, Deluxe, and Ultra. The handset makes an ideal package at a budget price tag and poses a straight threat against all players in the entry-level category, including Xiaomi, Lenovo, and Samsung.
ZenFone 3 has a lot on offer, but it will not be an easy run as ZTE’s flagship Axon 7 is going live at the same time. The premium looking ZTE handset ships with flagship level specs, and as per suggested rumors, will come at a price well below INR 35,000.
So the question stands, which one of these two makes a better package for the mid-to-high end smartphone arena ? Clearly, both look good and have a lot on offer, but to choose sides, here’s what you can keep in mind.
Design and form factor
While both phones look very premium and strong, the design language opted by Asus and ZTE makes a clear point of distinction. For ZenFone 3, Asus has taken inspiration from Galaxy S7 and has combined a full metal frame with contoured 2.5D Gorilla glass on both ends. The handset flaunts a sleek profile with a fingerprint scanner on the back and fits nicely in one hand with power and volume buttons on the right side. Overall, it looks very beautiful and far better than previous ZenFones made by the company.
Even ZTE Axon 7 makes an incredibly beautiful package. The device ships with a premium aluminium construction and fits nicely in one hand with its sleek profile and edge-to-edge screen. It is less chunky than last year’s ZTE Axon Pro and is equipped with a snappy fingerprint scanner on the rear panel. It adds a lot to the aesthetics with ZTE logo and makes undeniably clean and tempting package.
The display bundled ZenFone 3 and ZTE Axon 7 is a real treat for gamers and movie buffs. Both phones offer vibrant colour output with smart brightness optimizations that easily allow you to see what’s outside or at night. In real life, you’ll hardly find any difference between the two displays; they both endow immaculate visuals with fine details. However, on paper, ZTE Axon 7 is a far better player. Though with same screen size, the flagship offers a 2K Super AMOLED display with enhanced pixel density and protection from Gorilla Glass 4. It looks extremely impressive, and clearly outperforms ZenFone 3’s Super IPS+ capacitive touchscreen with 1080p resolution.
Internals and Performance
ZTE Axon 7 and ZenFone 3 are the undisputed winners for core performance. They both boast different internals, but make a completely awesome package for smooth and lag-free performance, even while going through a ton of emails or playing a heavy game.
On Axon 7, the flagship chipset from Qualcomm, Snapdragon 820 does the job perfectly. It handles all major tasks smoothly and creates an ideal ecosystem for non-stop multi-tasking. Work, play or do anything you like, this device, with 4/6GB of RAM and 64/128GB inbuilt storage, will not give you a single reason to complain.
ZenFone 3, on the other side, is not as powerful as ZTE Axon 7, but can do the job nicely. The device incorporates an octa-core Snapdragon 625 processor running at 2.0GHz and comes in two variants, one with 3GB RAM and 32GB inbuilt storage and other with 4GB of RAM and 64GB on-board storage, just like Axon 7. From gaming and multitasking to non-stop 4G usage, the new ZenFone makes everything easier with its smooth and snappy performance.
For indoor and outdoor photography, Axon 7 makes quite an impression with its 20-megapixel rear and 8-megapixel front-facing shooter. It boasts f/1.8 aperture with OIS and performs just at par with other flagships, promising picture-perfect shots with fine details and rich colours. You can capture fast moving objects in high-quality and can also record 4K videos at 30 frames per second.
Axon 7 is good, but considering the element of pricing, we’d like to appreciate the super camera ZenFone 3 has on offer. At a budget price tag, the new ZenFone gives you a 16-megapixel Sony camera at the back with shooting modes for almost any situation. It performs well in low light and delivers sharpest possible shots with an innovative autofocus system that leverages infrared lasers, continuous autofocus, and phase detection. In addition to this, Asus has also given optical and electronic image stabilization for removing camera shakes and shooting with unbelievable speed, reliability, and accuracy !
As for battery backup, there’s hardly any difference between the two phones. Asus ZenFone 3 comes with 3000 mAh battery, while Axon 7 boasts a slightly bigger 3,250 mAh battery. They both last more than a day on moderate usage and hold enough juice in reserve to bear heavy usage with frequent gaming, social networking, calling and binge watching. If you’re always up and running, these two phones will not disappoint you !
According to performance and specs, ZTE Axon 7 is the undisputed winner in this face-off. The device features strong internals with a well-optimized software, and pits against popular high-end devices, even Galaxy S7, and LG G5.
However, if we consider, value for money as the basic benchmark, ZenFone 3 is no less either. The meticulously crafted phone, at almost half the price of premium flagships, offers good looks and strong innards. It makes a tempting package for buyers on a budget and delivers top-notch performance with the latest iteration of Android. So, we’d say, if you want a flagship, go with Axon 7, else there’s nothing wrong in going for the new Asus ZenFone 3!