Using the companys dual screen. Laptops over the past couple years has changed what I expect from a mobile computer and the latest ROG Phone is so well equipped. It tempted even a non gamer like myself. Compared to those envelope. Pushers ASUSs two new Zenfones are far tamer offerings. Thats, because theyre trying to appeal to a more mainstream audience while still offering features other manufacturers have mostly written off.. The question is whether either one goes far enough. Fair warning to appreciate the first phone I’m gon na talk about today. You need to care about phone cameras., And even if you dont, you got ta admit this is cool. See almost every contemporary smartphone makes you sacrifice photo quality if you take a selfie, because those front facing cameras are almost always cheaper, components.. The problem has gotten worse. In recent years, because those selfie shooters are also placed within the display which necessitates a notch or a hole, punch cutout and also limits the field of view, so those spacious, wide angle, selfies of a few years back, have become rarer and rarer.. The Zenfone 8 Flip solves both problems with you guessed it a flip.. All three of its main cameras are mounted on a motorized module that rotates out from a recessed bay.. That means that when it comes time for a selfie youre, not sacrificing any quality because youre actually using the phones main cameras, they just happen to be pointing at you.. While this is the first time Ive used a Zenfone, Flip ASUS has been doing this for several years and that experience shines through in features custom tailored for vlogging.
. You can set the camera to any angle. You like using the volume keys, which is useful if you wan na, go hands free without a tripod, just watch out for the camera timeout.. If you do have a tripod, you can use object tracking to follow a subject, even if it leaves the frame by physically steering the camera and for the product reviewers out there. The same mode will keep focus on a subject. You select instead of defaulting to your face.. You can also steer the triple microphone input or compensate for wind noise.. The optics module is made from metal specially designed to resist deformation. If you drop it, but it shouldnt ever come to that, because the phones, accelerometer detects, falls and retracts the camera automatically before it hits the floor. Now astute ASUS fans may find this phone familiar. The design size. Even the cameras are the same as last year. Right down to the sensors, which wouldnt be a problem if their performance was better. But to be competitive in 2021, you need a camera with excellent dynamic range because hey sometimes the only way to get a group shot is when youre backlit and the only way to Get that contemplative cafe capture is to combat a lot of contrast.. Look the cameras, arent bad, and I should also say that this is non final software …, but remember it is last years hardware and the lack of optical stabilization stings as well.
. The whole package just feels very iterative, which makes sense, considering the company went out of its way to say this phone is not a sequel to the Zenfone 7 Pro.. Hopefully that means well get a Zenfone 8 Flip Pro at some point., Despite being the smaller sibling. This phone is ASUSs actual flagship for 2021.. This is the Zenfone 8 and its small stature belies its potent powerhouse. Like the Flip. This is powered by a Snapdragon 888 and it settles for two cameras and a 4000 mAh battery instead of the Flips 5000, but it takes the specs up a skoche pretty much everywhere. Else., The main camera is optically stabilized. The dual speakers are backed up by the headphone jack thats missing on the Flip, and the same goes for IP65 and IP68 dust and water resistance. Theres also double the RAM which you probably wont notice and a higher 120Hz refresh rate on the screen which you might. Thats, a lot of capability for a compact, smartphone and Im very happy to see a manufacturer other than Sony stepping up in the small phone space. Just like on the Flip, the Android 11 software is lightweight and what changes ASUS has made are mostly for the better. My favorite is a programmable shortcut key, so you can choose what happens both when you long press and when you double click., But am I going to rush out to replace my Pixel 5 or iPhone 12 mini with this one, Just like with the Flip? Probably not.
Thats because of a few, mostly minor, but still significant misses.. While the speakers are wonderful phone call. Quality through the earpiece is mediocre. On each. Theres, no wireless charging on either phone, which I always consider a waste of a good glass backplate.. The fingerprint sensors behaved during filming, of course, but in actual use I found them inconsistent. And, while looks are subjective … to me, these just arent very attractive phones.. Despite the flip camera on the big guy and the hole punch on the small one, theres, a substantial chin beneath the display on each and neither pushes the envelope aesthetically in any way., Even the colors are limited to boring black white or some kind of antimony inbetween.. About the only exciting thing about em is their bottom mounted notification LEDs, which takes me back to my StarTAC days.. If you can live with those compromises, you can pick up the Zenfones 8 for a starting price of 599 Euro for the small one and 799 for the Flip.. Those are pretty competitive prices for a phone that brings solid specs to the compact category and a phone that carries a one of a kind camera array and props to ASUS for packing in not just a charger but a case with each complete with a selfie inhibiting Switch for the Flip., But I still think the iterative nature of the Flip and the aesthetic timidity of the 8 will lead to fewer sales than might otherwise have been the case.
With foldables colossal cameras and gaming phones, some from ASUS itself. Finally, injecting some fun back into smartphones after years …, I just cant help wishing that ASUS had decided to make a stronger statement with its latest smartphones.. This review was produced following seven days with Zenfone 8 and Zenfone 8 Flip review samples provided by ASUS, but as always, the company had no editorial input into this content, received no early preview of same and provided no compensation for its creation.. Please subscribe to theMrMobile on YouTube if youd like to see more videos like this., TNT, TFW and if its available, where you live, please do what I did and get that vaccine …. So we can once again stay mobile.