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ASUS Has Dethroned Sony With The Compact Zenfone 8

ASUS Zenfone 8 Review AM AH 24
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ASUS has taken the wraps off of the Zenfone 8, and has decided to go in a slightly different direction, compared to the two previous generation Zenfone smartphones.

There are two Zenfone 8 models being announced today, but only one is coming to the US – the Zenfone 8. So we will be focusing on that one. There is also the Zenfone 8 Flip which has the flipping rear camera, and a full-screen display. It has similar specs, but with a much larger display.

ASUS is really stressing the size of the Zenfone 8. The company spent a ton of time researching smartphone sizes and found that this was the sweet spot, at around 5.9-inches. ASUS had to work some magic to get the Zenfone 8 down to this size, largely shrinking the PVC so that everything could still fit in this phone, along with a rather large 4000mAh capacity battery.

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The Zenfone 8 is outfitted with an aluminum unibody and 3D curved back cover. Which makes the Zenfone 8 feel really nice in the hand.

The most durable Zenfone ever

ASUS also made the Zenfone 8 more durable than previous models. This is the first time that it is certified IP68 for water and dust resistance.

In addition to that, there is also Gorilla Glass Victus on the front. Which has drop performance up to 2 meters. It’s supposedly twice as scratch-resistant compared to Gorilla Glass 6. The back of the phone is protected with Gorilla Glass 3, which is one of the most scratch-resistant glasses on the market right now.

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So you can rock the Zenfone 8 without a case if you wish. But, ASUS did still include a nice case in the box with the Zenfone 8.

Specs

Zenfone 8Zenfone 8 Flip
Display5.9″ FHD+ AMOLED
20:9, 120Hz refresh
6.67″ FHD+ AMOLED
20:9, 90Hz Refresh
ProcessorSnapdragon 888 5GSnapdragon 888 5G
RAM/Storage8/128, 8/2568/256
Cameras64MP main sensor
12MP ultrawide
64MP main sensor
12MP ultrawide
12MP telephoto
Battery4000mAh
Dimensions/weight148 x 68.5 x 8.9mm
169g
Price$599*€799

*This is not official pricing for the US, but what it is expected to be when it launches stateside. 

Small display, high refresh rate

For some, this 5.9-inch display is going to seem rather small. But that doesn’t mean it’s not good. Quite the contrary here. The ASUS Zenfone 8 has a 5.9-inch FHD+ Samsung AMOLED panel, which has a 120Hz refresh rate. As well as a 240Hz touch sampling rate. It is also HDR10+ certified. And covers 112% of the DCI-P3 Color Gamut. Finally, it has around 800 nits of peak brightness.

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This is stretched across a 20:9 aspect ratio, which brings pretty small bezels on the Zenfone 8. And the bezels are also uniform all around the phone too. So it looks super clean. There is still a camera hole in the left-hand corner though.

ASUS is using the E4 panel from Samsung, which is a new generation display that offers up to 15% lower power consumption. That improves battery life, even when using the phone outdoors in direct sunlight.

Impressive cameras, on paper

The cameras on the Zenfone 8 are pretty impressive, on paper. We’ll have to wait for the full review to decide if that is the case in real life.

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But ASUS has outfitted the Zenfone 8 with two rear cameras. There’s a 64-megapixel main sensor, that has an f/1.8 aperture, as well as PDAF and OIS. This is the Sony IMX686 sensor, which we’ve seen on a lot of smartphones this year.

The second sensor is a 12-megapixel ultrawide sensor (the Sony IMX363) and it supports dual PDAF and macro photography. That’s also a trend we’ve seen with a lot of smartphones this year.

Finally, on the front, there is also a 12-megapixel camera, with dual PDAF. And this is the Sony IMX663.

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On paper, these cameras look really impressive, but only time will tell whether that is the case.

Pricing and Availability

ASUS has not announced when the Zenfone 8 will be available to buy. But we do know that it will start at €599 in Europe. The Zenfone 8 Flip will start at €799 in Europe.

Keep in mind that the Zenfone 8 will come in four RAM/Storage sizes. There will be 6/128GB, 8/128GB, 8/256GB and 12/256GB sizes available for everyone to pick up.

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For the US, we know that the Zenfone 8 will be available, but pricing has not been 100% confirmed yet. Though it is expected to start at $599, for the 8/128GB model. As is usually the case, not all of the storage sizes will be coming to the US.