The $399 Asus Zenfone Zoom Could Challenge Existing Cameraphone Makers

Smartphones with optical zoom are nothing new to us. If you’re a long time geek, you already Nokia started this trend and since then we’re seeing the variations of zoom phones. Very recently, Samsung tried to do it with Galaxy S4 Zoom and its successor Galaxy K Zoom, out of which K Zoom looked more refined and sophisticated.

We now have another and rather a surprising phone maker who is doing zoom smartphone. Guess who? Asus. Yup, nobody expected them to show up in the camera game. Certainly I didn’t after trying out Zenfone 6. But its new cameraphone might just change that image of the company. Aptly named, Asus Zenfone Zoom is its first attempt at high end cameraphones. And no, company isn’t playing any gimmick here.  Zenfone Zoom has a 13MP rear camera featuring 3X optical zoom. Sensor itself isn’t mosnterous in terms of mega-pixel count but it’d be interesting to see if Asus has used physically bigger sensor. Surprisingly, Asus has still managed to keep it compact as there’s no part popping out of your phone. But it still has a camera hump on the back which is fairly manageable. On a side note, that camera hump is strikingly similar to Nokia’s Lumia 1020. Its camera uses 10 element lenses, has OIS (Optical Image Stabilization), laser auto focus and dual tone flash. No high-end cameraphone is complete without Xenon flash and Asus has indeed put Xenon flash on its Zenfone Zoom. To bring out the photographer inside you, Asus has also provided full manual mode which lets you set focus, shutter speed among other parameters.

Asus-Zenfone-Zoom-Front-Back

Zenfone Zoom will sport a 5.5 inch FullHD display boasting 400 nits of brightness and Gorilla Glass 3 protection. The 3000 mAh battery seems just perfect for the phone. But Asus has kept other key details under the wraps (at least on its site) such as the processor and the RAM, the combo which will be ultimately responsible for its performance. How much would you pay for this solid cameraphone? It’ll cost just $399.

I’m excited to try it out and see if it is any match for current high-end cameraphones such as Galaxy K Zoom or Lumia 1020 or even Lumia 1520. It’d also be interesting to see if Asus brings this phone to US or Euro markets.