Asus has unveiled the latest member of the Zenfone series, Asus Zenfone Zoom. The camera-focused phone, which was announced at CES, will be available for Indian consumers at Rs 37,999 on Flipkart and Asus retail stores. Throw in another Rs 2000 and you'll get a small tripod and Zenflash with the phone.
Asus Zenfone Zoom is a 5.5" phone with a full HD display and Gorilla glass 4 protection. It uses intel's Quad-core 64-bit Atom chipset and 4 GB RAM. Internal storage is huge at 128 GB and an option of microSD slot. The rear camera on which the phone is focused is a 13 MP, a f/2.7 shooter with 10 element HOYA lens. The camera has 3X optical zoom with Optical Image Stabilization (OIS).
The front camera is of 5 MP and f/2.0 aperture. It has the ability to click panorama selfie. On the software from the phone runs ZenUI based on Android 5.0. The camera software has been focused on a lot. The phone has Pixelmaster software with different modes like Backlight, beautification and object removal. It also has an advanced Manual mode for experienced photographers.
"The Zenfone series has been highly successful all over the world, selling 28 million units till now. In India, Asus has sold 3 million Zenfones and a record highest 80000 phones in a day in an online sale," Asus CEO Jerry Shen said.
"Last year in January we launched the first smartphone with 4 GB RAM. This year we shifted focus to something that everyone loves. Photos," he said.
Jen Chuang from Asus design center explained the process, material, and thinking which went into designing the phone.
"I always take a lot of photos in my tour. From close-ups to panoramas and zoomed photos. So we teamed up with HOYA, japan to make a camera which gives you a DSLR experience," Erik Hermanson, Global marketing director, said while explaining the components which went into the making of the camera.
Intel's Anand Dhand also attend the event to talk about the partnership between two companies.
Asus had set up a huge experience zone with different kinds of set-up to explore various aspects of the phone but here also the focus was on the camera. The phone felt solid in the hand, not too big to operate with one hand. The screen looked nice, although not overwhelmingly good.
The faux-leather finish doesn't feel as good as a leather but we have to see how it feels after a bit of use. The camera controls on the side will be particularly useful for recording and capturing.
Talking about the camera, point and shoot feature was pretty good. We tried taking a few macro shots and they came out nicely. There is are inbuilt modes in camera. Asus had a separate booth for demonstrating the long exposure feature which was fairly impressive. Surely, we will test this further in real life scenarios.
The 3X optical zoom worked well in the setup, clearly displaying the work that has gone into crafting the camera. The biggest surprise though was that despite all these features the video recording was limited to 1080p at 60 fps.
On the performance scale, the software did feel a bit wonky at times running ZenUI built on Android 5.0 but it might not just be the final software in the shipped devices. Playing Asphalt 8 on the phone was a good experience. No hiccups whatsoever and that is expected out of the 64-bit intel processor.
Look out for our full review of the phone.
Also on HuffPost:
So here it is, the Apple Watch. Not only is it Apple's most un-Apple design we've ever seen on the outside but it's just as radical on the inside as well. Apple has built and entirely new operating system just for the wrist-worn wearable so you can see notifications, fitness information and even send each other hand-drawn messages. It'll come in a range of different versions including an 18-karat gold 'Edition' version. Apple Watch Price: TBC
The Asus ZenWatch is arguably one of the best-looking smartwatches out there giving the Moto 360 a run for its money. It's also one of the best. With a water-resistant body, Gorilla Glass 3 display and super-slim body it's actually one of the few wearables that we'd actually take out to dinner. It's hard to think of a higher compliment for a smartwatch at the moment. Asus ZenWatch Price: £199.99
The Moto 360 is widely-regarded as the watch that'll win you over to going smart. Running Android Wear the Moto 360 features a stunning all-metal design along with a Gorilla Glass 3 round display. It's light, features wireless charging and is waterproof. Moto 360 Price: £199
This is the Sony Smartwatch 3. It's water-resistant and runs Android Wear. Sony hasn't stopped there though and has added a number of Sony-specific apps including Walkman control and the ability to control Sony's Wifi-Lens. Sony Smartwatch 3 Price: £149.99
The LG G Watch R is probably the first smart watch that desperately wants to convince you it's a watch. The fully-circular touchscreen display shows a number of different watch faces while Android Wear gives you voice control. There's a heart-rate monitor on the back for those fitness addicts as well. LG G Watch Price: £200
Microsoft has joined the fight and the Microsoft Band is its opening salvo. The Band is a simple affair to look at but packs all the tech needed to power a top-of-the-range smart watch and fitness tracker. It comes with a heart-rate monitor, notification centre for alerts and comes with a bright OLED touchscreen. The clincher? It's compatible with iOS, Android and Windows Phone. Microsoft Band Price: £TBC
The Gear Fit is more of a fitness band than a smart watch, or maybe it's the other way around. Either way with it's small curved OLED screen water-resistant body it's a real looker. It's subtle enough that you won't be seen as a screaming tech fan but yet packs in enough tech that you'll be wanting for nothing. Galaxy Gear Fit Price: £124.95
The Withings Activité might be the one smart watch that can actually claim to being a watch first. Beautifully designed and extremely simple the Activité features a small dial which shows you just how active you've been. It's waterproof and uses Bluetooth LE to relay all the big data to your phone. Withings Activité Price: £TBC
With its new design and the great ecosystem of apps — not to mention the new capabilities of the Pebble 2.0 SDK — the Pebble Steel is a winner. Pebble Steel Price: £155
The Adidas MiCoach Smart Run is built -- as you can probably tell -- for one specific purpose. While it's an excellent watch this is all about running. With GPS, continuous heart-rate monitoring and more the Smart Run is the ultimate fitness tracker. Bluetooth 4.0 makes it ideal for wireless headphones while 4GB memory mean it'll hold all the music you need. Price: TBC
A Samsung Gear S2 Classic smart watch is on display during a Samsung news conference at CES Press Day at CES International, Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2016, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)