The Asus Zenfone 2 Laser has been with me for over a week now and I have to say, it’s a pretty impressive phone, especially for its price.
The size of the phone is just right – slightly larger than the Samsung Galaxy S6 but still fitting comfortably in my hand. It’s also quite light at a measly 140g so keeping it in your pocket won’t pull your pants down.
The most striking difference of course is the placement of the volume buttons of the Asus Zenfone 2 Laser — they’re in the middle of back panel, instead of on the side as with most phones. It was a strange design choice initially but I quickly realized the benefits: (1) I don’t have to worry about hitting the buttons when I place the phone in the various clamps/holders that I use, and (2) It’s more easily reachable with one hand which is a definite plus if you have smaller hands.
It’s also a DUAL-SIM phone so I don’t have to lug around 2 phones anymore (business & personal) — I can handle both using 1 phone. A mini bonus for me is that it used a micro-sim (not a nano-sim), so I didn’t have to get a new sim card to use this phone.
The display is gorgeous, displaying 16M colors on the 5.0″ capacity touchscreen. The resolution is a reasonable 720×1280 pixels which, honestly, is enough for me. With a screen of that size, that resolution is more than enough.
Specs do show that it uses a Corning Gorilla Glass 4 so it should at least be scratch-proof. Unfortunately, barely a week into using the phone, my 2 year old girl unfortunately stepped on the phone with the display side down on the wooden floor. I wasn’t really worried – it’s Gorilla Glass! Unfortunately, the screen did have very deep scratches after that. Was a bit disappointed, of course, and it came as a surprise considering that this was supposed to be Gorilla Glass. It wasn’t covered by warrantly as well. 🙁
The phone came with Android 5.0 (Lollipop) so aside from being able to play with the Angry (Android) Birds easter egg, I was also able to enjoy some of the latest features of Android (at least until Marshmallow). With the quad-core CPU performed really well as I usually have tons of apps running side-by-side. The CPU handled the load quite admirably and I didn’t notice any slow down switching between apps. The game did have a little lag when I started up Dark Lands with it’s graphically intensive intro but after that the actual game ran quite smoothly. You can also use a microSD up to 128GB so with that and the cloud, I doubt I’ll ever need to clean up my phone!
Next, we move on to something that is really important for me as a blogger and mother who wants to capture every moment of my Zeeka’s development:the camera. The camera is impressive at 13MP (4128x3096px) with laser autofocus — it was able to focus quite quickly and accurately so I was able to capture the little fleeting moments (that one smile in the middle of a tired babys’s tantrum)! It captures video at 1080p (30fps) which is enough for me. The front camera is also quite impressive at 5 MP — our selfies were surprisingly crisp and quite clear!
WIFI and 3G performed well, I didn’t encounter any connection issues at all and was always at the fastest speed available. GPS took a little longer to get a lock though, especially in the evenings. I didn’t encounter this with my iPhone and my husband didn’t with his Xiaomi either so that was a bit of a disappointment.
The battery is quite impressive, I would say my consumption is a bit higher than a normal person’s but during a normal workday (occassional calls, reading/replying to messages, browsing my social networks) from 9am to 6pm, ate up about 50% battery life. I would say it’s at par with the performance of my iPhone. One of my favorite things about the battery is that it’s removeable! So if, later on, the battery decides to conk out on me (as has repeatedly happened with my other phones), I can just buy a new battery and replace it myself — problem solved.
The phone I got was a beautiful gold color. It felt a little in between plastic and solid. I would’ve preferred a more metalic feeling phone but I do appreciate the tradeoff with weight — I would’ve gone with a lighter one as well.
All in all, the Asus Zenfone 2 Laser is an excellent buy especially at it’s SRP. If you’re looking for a hard-working sub-10K PHP phone, this is it. Just make sure you get a screen protector ASAP! 🙂
PS. Here’s (http://www.gsmarena.com/compare.php3?idPhone1=7474&idPhone2=6378&idPhone3=6849) a handy comparison of this phone versus the iPhone6 and Samsung Galaxy S6 which is at 5x-6x the price. It holds its own quite well!