We are lucky to have a preview of the Zenfone 3 Zoom which was announced at the CES 2017. Back here in the Philippines, our friends from ASUS invited us over to take a look and have a quick hands-on on the Snapdragon 625-powered Zenfone 3 Zoom.
The front is a Zenfone 3!
Yes, what you are seeing in the photo above is the Zenfone 3 Zoom and it looks almost exactly the same as the Zenfone 3. The only difference is that the front camera of the ZF3 Zoom is on the left. (Zenfone 3’s front camera is on the right side).
The screen size is the same and the capacitive buttons are same as the ZF3 including the placements of the power button and volume rocker.
The back is a new story
Flip it back and you’ll see a different Zenfone. You will find a metal back with the ASUS logo placed down below. The square curved fingerprint scanner is nicely positioned so that it is easy to reach.
The placement of the dual 12MP camera si likened to the iPhone 7 Plus and dual LED flash and Laser AF is right below the camera. The dual 12MP camera feature Dual-LED (Dual Tone) flash, Phase Detection Autofocus, Laser AutoFocus, OIS, EIS, f/1.7 aperture, Sony IMX362 Sensor, Geo-tagging, Touch Focus, Face/smile Detection, HDR, & Panorama.
Like we said earlier, the ZF3 Zoom has the resemblance of the Zenfone 3, therefore it uses the same USB Type C and a quick charging feature is still there.
Dual Hybrid SIM still
SIM tray is a hybrid one, a combination of either Nano SIM + Micro SIM, or Micro SIM + microSD Card. The microSD slot supports up to 128G maximum.
Very high-capacity battery
Now this is where the Zenfone 3 Zoom took the feature of the Zenfone 3 Max. At a very slim body, ASUS was able to install a 5,000mAH fast-charing battery.
The 12MP Sample shots
The Zenfone 3 Zoom uses the same camera app as the other Zenfone 3 series. The default camera is the 1x zoom and to activate the 2.3 zoom camera you just need to press the 2.3x on-screen button.
The wide-angle 12MP camera shot aka 1x zoom
The second 12MP camera shot with 2.3X zoom.
And here’s the lone sample of the front camera.
Before we make our initial thoughts, let us remind you guys that what we tested is an engineering sample only. There are issues that we spotted immediately, for example, the camera is kind of sluggish when switching from 1x to 2.3x zoom and vice versa. According to ASUS PH, this will be addressed in the commercial version.
The Zenfone 3 Zoom is a fusion of Zenfone 3 and Zenfone Max but with an upgrade in terms of camera. This is ASUS’ first dual rear camera. I also wonder how ASUS was able to manage to stuff the 5,000mAH battery into the Zenfone 3 Zoom without looking massive.
In the software department, we’ve seen very family pre-installed apps. If you are going to get the 2G+16G version, you will have to expand your storage by killing the second SIM slot.
Now, which one in these three Zenfones is the Zenfone 3 Zoom? Let us know the comments section.
Unboxing video coming up
We are going to edit our unboxing video tonight. Stay tuned for that and check out our YouTube channel.