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Asus ZenFone 6 Review – Is it a Worthwhile Flagship Killer?

The Asus Zenfone 6 is the recent affordable flagship phone, which looks premium enough to turn heads of people nearby. If 48MP flip-popup camera setup, Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor, headphone jack, dedicated quick launch buttons, and dedicated micro SD card slot are not enough to attract to this device, you will definitely be surprised by its price.

Asus ZenFone 6 Review

At just $499, Asus ZenFone 6 has come as a strong competitor to OnePlus 7 Pro and Pixel 3a.

Asus has managed to come up with the combination of mid-range pricing and flagship-level specs. Well, there are a few features that a few users might be missing badly. Nevertheless, it seems Asus had no other way to do cost-cutting.

Lack of water resistance and wireless charging support might be the red flag, but it is still worth it because a lot of mid-range phones don’t come with such features.

Under the Box

  • Asus Earphones
  • Transparent silicon back cover
  • USB-A to USB-C type charging cable
  • 18W charging adapter

Design

  • Weighs 190g
  • Dimension – 159.1 x 75.44 x 9.1mm
  • Full-view display
  • Dual SIM tray
  • Ambient Light sensor
  • Flip popup camera
  • Headphone jack
  • Dedicated MicroSD card slot
  • Rear fingerprint sensor
  • Quick Actions button

Asus ZenFone 6 Design

The ZenFone 6 has got a decent yet appealing design, thanks to its aggressive-looking flip camera with blue accents. It has got Gorilla Glass 6 protection with the aluminum frame on the corners. It feels premium and expensive at hand.

Despite lacking wireless charging, the device comes with a lot of buttons and ports. There is a power button with a cool blue accent matching the Asus logo on the rear, dedicated quick action button, and volume rockers on the right side.

The quick action button launches Google Assistant by default, but you can change it later to do things like opening the camera, taking a screenshot, or changing sound mode.

The bottom holds USB-C port, a headphone jack, and speaker grill. On the left, there is no physical button but a dual SIM tray with dedicated MicroSD card slot. The display is free of notches and cutouts as the camera flips on the top of the phone. Well, there is no IP rating officially to prove its dust and water resistance.

Performance

  • Octa-core CPU
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 855
  • 6GB/8GB variants
  • Adreno 640 GPU
  • 64GB/256GB storage options
  • Expandable MicroSD storage

Asus Phone Performance

By considering the specs, it goes without saying that ZenFone 6 has no competition. It is sure that you will not see any lag or stuttering with this device. You can multitask smoothly with 6GB or 8GB of RAM. However, the device gets warmer on heavy load, especially while gaming.

With 370,000 points in AnTuTu benchmarks, the Asus Zenfone 6 literally beats Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus. Enable AI Boost mode for the best performance. However, it is not recommended because it drains the battery faster.

Display

  • A massive 6.4-inch IPS LCD display
  • 5:9 aspect ratio
  • 2340x1080p resolution at 403ppi refresh rate
  • Gorilla Glass 6 protection

LCD display might be a turn off for most of the users, especially when some mid-range and high-end smartphones have better battery life, OLED display for deeper blacks, and always-on display.

The main problem with LCD tech is that the whole display remains lighted on, affecting the dynamic range and battery life. On the other side, the OLED panel illuminates separate pixels.

Another issue is its brightness, which ends at 600 nits. Therefore, you have to keep it on max brightness when going out. However, the quality of the panel is still very decent. It can display the whole space with 100% DCP-13 coverage and has Gorilla Glass 6 protection.

Battery

  • Qualcomm Quick Charge 4.0
  • 18W fast charger
  • 5000mAh
  • No wireless charging

Despite giving the huge 5000mAh powerhouse, Asus Zenfone 6 still fails to give that much juice. We got around 6 ½ hours of life on screen-on time, which is quite good. You may get a full day on one charge but it will definitely not be able to last two full days.

High-level of standby battery drain is another big issue. I left the device with 25% of battery left when going to bed but got it dead when I woke up. It’s quite strange as to why this device drains so terribly fast. It also takes time to charge up despite having an 18W charger.

Camera

  • 48MP camera with f/1.79 aperture
  • Flip camera
  • 13MP ultra-wide sensor
  • 12MP sensor for pixel-binned images

Asus ZenFone 6 Camera

The Asus Zenfone 6 features 48MP Sony IMX586 primary camera and 13MP wide-angle lens. One thing that makes it stand out is the way it flips up as a selfie camera. In this day when most brands are using either punch-hole display or pop-up selfie camera for full-view display, Asus has done it out of the box and come up with flip-up camera over the top.

Software

  • Android 9 Pie
  • Zen UI 6

The Asus Zenfone 6 runs Android 9 Pie with ZenUI 6, which is a great upgrade over its terrible predecessor. It has AI Boost for in-depth usage and a dedicated screen recorder. Overall, it is great to have a simpler interface, which provides more control to the user over the apps.

Pricing

  • 6GB RAM/64GB Storage – $499
  • 6GB RAM/128GB Storage – $559
  • 8GB RAM/256GB Storage – $599

Pros

  • Good build quality
  • Awesome performance and specs
  • Great flagship killer
  • Massive battery
  • Innovative Camera

Cons

  • Outdated LCD display
  • Feels bulky
  • No wireless charging

Our Verdict

Starting at $499, it goes without mentioning that Asus ZenFone 6 is a great steal deal. A lot of flagships don’t offer such killer specs despite charging over $1000. The new UI makes it even smoother in usage.

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Poonam

Having a keen interest in technology and gadgets, I love writing reviews and insights for electronic items like Smart Phones, Smart Watches, Games, Gaming devices, etc. I am a tech enthusiast with a passion for the smartphone world, been reviewing and experimenting with them for the last 8 years.

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