It was back in May when we announced that the new ASUS ZenFone 2 was available in Canada at several retailers – Newegg, NCIX, Canada Computers and Memory Express. It was so popular that some places sold out of the devices, but we are happy to announce that Staples of Canada is now carrying both models. The 2GB RAM/16GB storage model with the Intel Atom Z3560 processor will run you $255 and the more powerful 4GB/64GB model with the Intel Atom Z3580 processor will cost you $379 outright and unlocked. Both models allow for 64GB of memory expansion via a microSD card and come in Black, Silver, Red or Gold.
ASUS presented the new ZenFone 2 in January at CES and it finally made its way to North America. The ASUS name is familiar to us because of the value and performance they offer in their computer line and they mean to acquaint us with their smartphone line up. The Taiwanese company is using the new Intel Atom chips in their latest flagship device as the processor and the well-known PowerVR GPU for graphics. By using the Intel name, ASUS is hoping to gain some recognition and acceptance in the smartphone industry.
Both models are identical except for the gigabytes of RAM, memory and processor. They come with a 5.5-inch IPS LCD Full HD display with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels and 403 pixels-per-inch (PPI). The main camera uses a 13MP sensor with autofocus and a dual-toned LED flash and both come with a 5MP front-facing camera (FFC) for social media selfies and video chatting. The ZenFone 2 is a dual-SIM device and has LTE-Advance band access for speeds up to 250Mbps for downloading…if you can find those speeds anywhere. The ZenFone 2 will work on the following bands – GSM/EDGE (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz) – UMTS/HSPA+/DC-HSDPA (850, 900, 1700/2100, 1900, 2100 MHz) – and LTE (Bands 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 17, 20). The LTE bands will work across all Canadian carriers and the HSPA+ ensures that it will also work on WIND Mobile, Mobilicity (now owned by Rogers), Videotron and others.
Depending what model you purchase, the processor will be an Intel Atom Z3560 quad-core clocked at 1.8GHz with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage or the Intel Atom Z3580 quad-core clocked at 2.3GHz with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of internal memory. It will be running Android 5.0 out-of-the-box with ASUS’ ZenUI as an overlay.