Review of ASUS Zenfone 5 (2018) – A Good Budget Phone?

In the budget phone space, the idea of a “good” product varies as it really depends on customer’s perception of “good”.  Today, I am going to review ASUS Zenfone 5. I am going to share with you on my idea of a “good” budget phone. I have broken it down into the following which I think it may help you in deciding whether you should buy the ASUS Zenfone 5.

ASUS Zenfone 5

Simplicity

This is perhaps my most important criterion on budget phone. As a budget phone user, I don’t need sophisticated features. I just need a phone that works while at the same time, saves my credit card bills. The Android user interface (UI) should not be that different from the Android phones that I have used before. To put it simply, the UI of the budget phone should look just like a stock Android.

 

Back to our topic on ASUS Zenfone 5, the phone deserves a thumbs-up. The ZenUI 5 of Zenfone 5 is almost identical to stock android. I have no problem familiarising the interface. I can locate the contact and phone app easily. Setting up is extremely easy as you could easily by-pass the FaceID and fingerprint setup. (Yes, I really don’t think these are important features for a budget phone).

 

I am not a photo-person but as we are communicating more on social networks these days, camera plays an important part of your entire smartphone experience.  We all love to shoot beautiful photos. The AI camera of Zenfone 5 detects and automatically adjust the image setting to make stunting-looking photos.

 

I have put up some of my photos shot by Zenfone 5 in Europe. I don’t think the image quality is perfect but there are good enough for me to share on my social networks.

Sample Shot by ASUS Zenfone 5
Sample Shot by ASUS Zenfone 5
Sample Shot by ASUS Zenfone 5

 

What needs to be there should be there

The Zenfone 5 is equipped with 3.5mm audio jack

Ironically, phone makers are trying to remove some standard features as part of their new product offerings I don’t think that’s the right way (at least for budget phones). Fortunately, the Zenfone 5 is equipped with USB Type C and 3.5mm audio jack (3.5mm audio jack is not a standard feature for some phones).

 

A battery that could last you for a whole day. The ASUS Zenfone 5 is packed with 3,300 mAh which is not too bad considering some flagship phones in 2018 may offer even less than that.

 

Price

Value vs Money – the game of the budget phone maker. The ASUS Zenfone 5 is selling at SGD 488 which is not exactly attractive (at least to me). At that price range, I could be looking other alternatives from Xiaomi.

 

Verdict

I must say ASUS has come a long way. The ZenUI has improved a lot since they launched their first phone. It is very easy to navigate within the phone. The camera is up-to-mark and it serves my social media needs

 

Front camera and the notch of Zenfone 5

In general, almost everything about this phone seems to hit the right spot. Its price at SGD 488 is kind of turn-off. Although the Zenfone 5 has packed with features that you could find in the premium phones like the face unlock, that is not necessary for most users. As a budget phone user myself, I will rather have this feature removed in exchange for a lower price.

 

Despite it is a good product, my advice is to wait for a better discount which I believe it should be happening soon as ASUS is releasing newer models.


Also published on Medium.

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