The Asus ZenFone 5Z is a smartphone with flagship-level specs, but a reasonably affordable price tag.

Asus unveiled the phone at Mobile World Congress, and the ZenFone 5Z is expected to sell for $499 and up when it hits the streets in June (or 479 Euros).

That’s a pretty good price for a phone with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor, a 6.2 inch Full HD+ IPS display with a 19:9 aspect ratio, dual cameras, and UFS 2.1 storage.

Asus says the ZenFone 5Z has a 90-percent screen-to-body ratio, making the ZenFone 5Z about the same size as a 5.5 inch phone with a 16:9 display.

If you’re wondering why this phone has a 19:9 display rather than the more common 18:9 (or 2:1), it’s to make up for the fact that the phone has a camera cut-out, or notch above the display.

Asus says the Zenfone 5Z notch is 26 percent smaller than the one on the iPhone X. But unlike the iPhone, the Asus Zenfone 5Z will put a black bar at the top of the screen when you’re playing videos, so the picture doesn’t wrap around the notch.

Thanks to the 19:9 screen, that means you can watch 18:9 videos with a black bar without cutting anything off.

The phone will be available with up to 8GB of RAM and up to 256GB of storage.

The rear camera system includes a 12MP primary camera with a Sony IMX363 image sensor, an f/1.8 aperture, optical image stabilization, and an 83 degree field of view and a secondary camera with a 120 degree wide-angle lens.

The ZenFone 5Z has an 8MP front-facing camera, 802.11ac WiFi, Bluetooth 5.0, NFC, a USB Type-C port, and a fingerprint reader on the back.  It has a 3,300 mAh battery.

Other features include support for either using two SIM cards or a SIM card and a microSD card and 4K video recording at up to 60 frames pr second. The phone has stereo speakers and supports 7.1 channel virtual surround sound via headphones.

It also has a new feature called ZeniMoji which is basically the Asus answer to Apple’s animoji (and Samsung’s AR emoji). Users can point the selfie camera at their faces to “animate cute avatars using their own voice, facial expressions, and head movements” in video chats, or live video streams.

The Asus ZenFone 5Z has a metal frame with a glass back cover, and the phone will be available in blue or silver colors.

Asus also revealed two other ZenFone 5 Series phones at MWC: the ZenFone 5 (with a similar design, but less powerful specs), and the ZenFone 5Q (also known as the ZenFone 5 Lite, with a 6 inch screen, quad cameras, and a Snapdragon 630 processor).

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7 replies on “Asus ZenFone 5Z is a $499 phone with Snapdragon 845”

  1. Seems like a good value on first impressions…
    …but I think that value will be greatly eroded by poor housing choice, lack of proper QC checks, subpar screen quality, cheap internal accessories, lack of ingress protection, unoptimised camera software, thirsty bloated software, little to no software and hardware support.

    Some companies overcharge (less value) but at least get the fundamentals perfected.

  2. And to think OnePlus 5t costs about $549. And they say they are selling budget flagship. Asus’s move is a middle finger salute to that unknown company.

  3. Great price for the specs, but two things: 1. Does it still have that heavy Zen overlay; and 2. I was burned with the first Zenphone and screen problems that Asus never acknowledged nor remedied.

  4. Impressive especially at the prices indicated but what about software & project treble, where do they stand on that?

    1. Has ZenUI 5 which is based on Oreo. Since its got Oreo preinstalled it’ll have Project Treble (Google requires Project Treble support for any phones that come with Oreo preinstalled).

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