Zenfone C is Asus’s newest addition to its awesome portfolio. Asus have been enjoying quite a great ride with it’s smartphones in India. They have been more than successful in marketing and selling their Zenfone series of smartphones. They have been focusing on budget segment with their smartphones, and they have released a stepped down version of their Zenfone 5 recently (read our hands on review here), which really is great. They have also been teasing their new high end model, Zenfone 2. Now have released a great new smartphone, Asus Zenfone C. We’ll look how the phone performs and is it any good!
Design & Screen
The Asus Zenfone C is designed much like every other phones in Zenfone series. Hand one could put on a red model with a plastic back cover that curve gently forward. On the front, has a glass Gorilla Glass 3, which completely surrounds the screen, which is a 4.5-inch 480×854 pixel IPS LCD one.
Below the 4.5 inch display, there are the three sensitive keys – Return, Home and Multitasking. The capacitive keys are not backlit, as with all other Zenfones. Under these buttons, there’s a brushed aluminum plate which is carved in a pattern makes the phone more sexy. At the top of the screen, there’s the earpiece, light/proximity sensor, LED notification light, the front camera and ‘Asus’ branding in chrome letters.
At the back, we can find the Camera with LED flash beneath it. The camera sensor is surrounded by a chrome ring and which is slightly lower than the shell. At the bottom, we can find the Intel logo & Zenfone branding, and of course the speaker.
The back cover can be removed, allowing access to the battery (non removable) with two micro SIM slots and the slot for the MicroSD card.
Processor and Memory
Asus Zenfone C comes with the 1.2 GHz Intel Atom Z2520 Dual Core Processor, which we first saw in many other Asus phones such as Zenfone 4 A450CG & A400CG, and Zenfone 5 (new model).
The processor employs hyper threading technology, which makes the processor a virtual quad core one, by which the OS sees it as a quad core SoC. That’s the reason by which the CPU Z app recognize the processor as a quad core one and not a dual core processor. The phone comes with 1 GB of RAM, which is good and now almost all the phones are having a minimum of that much RAM.
The phone comes with an internal memory of 8 GB, which can be expanded by using a MicroSD card for up to 64 GB.
Asus has made itself quite a name with the Zenfone 5 camera. It was the best camera smartphone in the budget, the Zenfone C also follows it’s elder brother’s path and gives good camera performance. The camera in Zenfone C is a 5 megapixel one on back.
For camera, Asus employs the same camera sensor unit that is going in Asus Zenfone 4 A400CG. It is good but it can’t match the camera quality and clarity that Xiaomi Redmi 1s is providing, which is still the king in the camera department.
The only disappointment on camera is that the phone is having only a VGA camera at the front, which is not that great for selfies.
Android and UI
Asus uses their own UI in their phones much like other Manufacturers such as Samsung, LG, Xiaomi etc. The UI in Asus phone are named ZenUI. ZenUI is one of the most stable and fluid Android custom skins I’ve seen. It doesn’t bog down the user experience, neither it is heavy (like TouchWiz).
The phone comes with Android 4.4.2 (with ZenUI on top) out of the box. Visually, I find that this interface is simply sublime. It’s really different from what other manufacturers offer and it makes us a bit much fresh new take on Android. The UI is very well optimized and you won’t find much lags or bugs, a great work done by Asus’s developers.
We have seen good ideas from Asus, now on to what bothered me, the manufacturer’s in built apps (or bloat). Not that they are bad, on the contrary the e-mail app and the browser, are really very good (both on looks and usability), but there are too many of them : Calendar, mail client, a browser, a calculator, a cloud service, note-taking software and I forget. It’s much like the bloat Samsung tries to fill in the phone with.
Battery & Other Features
Asus put in generous amount of battery in the Zenfone C, coming at 2100 mAh. It is a decent amount considering the specs of the phone, but what we have to take into consideration is the inclusion of power hungry Intel processor. Considering the specs similar to Zenfone 4 (A450CG), I can say this phone will last one day in one full charge, but you might have to search for a wall charger if you’re in to heavy gaming.
The phone is having dual SIM slots, as almost every other smartphones we can find in the market now. All other general connectivity options are also included with this phone : Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, hotspot, Bluetooth 4.0, GPS, GLONASS, FM Radio, etc. The phone sells in 3 colors : Charcoal Black, Pearl White, Cherry Red.
Specifications[table id=ZenfoneC /]
Asus Zenfone C smartphone is great sub budget range smartphone to buy. It was launched at the perfect time, with the budget king Xiaomi Redmi 1s now out of stores, which other perfect time would a phone like this get?
It has got everything to become a best seller in the category : great build quality & design, good screen and great processing power. The competitors of the phone would be the newly launched Lenovo A6000, Huawei Honor Holly, Moto E and several Micromax handsets (especially the MMX Unite 2). My prediction would be that, this phone will do well in the market, with the great response Asus had with all the other previous models. The phone costs Rs. 5999 from Flipkart.[wp-review]
If you liked this hands-on review, just hit the share buttons and support us! Don’t forget to share your opinion on this phone here!