Review: ASUS ZenFone 4 Pro

I’ve reviewed a number of ASUS phones over the years. But the ZenFone 4 Pro has to be their best effort. It mostly ticks of the boxes on what a flagship phone should be. Thus it is worthy or your consideration. Here’s why.

Before I get to the phone. Let me talk about the box. When you open the box, you don’t see anything but a bunch of boxes inside. The phone actually folds out in another compartment. Which is a rather cool way to package it. The box itself is magnetically closed. I have to admit that this was one of the cooler unboxing experiences that I’ve lately.

ASUS has put a 5.5-inch 1920 x 1080 resolution AMOLED display on the ZenFone 4 Pro, which gives it a pixel density of 401 ppi. It is covered in Gorilla Glass 5 for protection. Here’s the catch, With the fingerprint sensor on the bottom, and two big bezels on the top and bottom, my first thought was that this was an iPhone clone. ASUS may want to go with an edge to edge display for their next phone just to avoid that comparison. But in any case, it looks very good and is visible in most lighting conditions that I used it in.

Under the hood, ASUS has this on offer:

  • 8 core CPU
  • 6GB RAM
  • 64GB Of Storage
  • Dual SIM capability, or use the second SIM slot to expand the memory.
  • Android Nougat
  • USB-C
  • 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac
  • Bluetooth 5.0
  • NFC
  • 4G LTE
  • Headphone jack

The phone itself feels solid. But it’s a full-glass smartphone with some metal on the frame. That means that if you drop it, you risk cracking the glass. Let’s face it, glass is slippery and fragile, which are definitely two things you usually don’t want in a smartphone. But tell that to everyone buying an iPhone X. Regardless a case is mandatory as it is an all glass phone. Having said that, it wasn’t the fingerprint magnet that I was expecting it to be. The volume rocker and power button on the right side of the phone, with the USB-C port, 3.5mm headphone jack, and speaker at the bottom. The left side houses the SIM and microSD card slot/second SIM slot. The phone is fast and didn’t bog down regardless of what I tossed at it. The skin that ASUS uses won’t annoy users. Plus the included software adds value to the ZenPhone 4 Pro rather subtract from it.

But the real star of the show is the camera. The rear camera is a dual camera setup which features a 12-megapixel main sensor and then a 16-megapixel secondary, telephoto sensor. That’s kind of different as you usually don’t see that kind of setup. It worked well when I tested it by going to the brand new Line 1 extension of the Toronto Subway System. The extension comprises six new stations and is the first extension of Toronto’s subway system in 15 years. Here’s a look at the six new stations which comprised a variety of lighting conditions:

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The camera of the ZenFone 4 Pro is insanely good. The autofocus is fast and the camera recycles quickly. If you want a great camera, this is it. It’s easily competitive with anything else that is out there. One note, you can run it in auto mode, or put it in pro mode so that you can control every aspect of the camera’s function. It also has a portrait mode that I tested by by taking a couple of pictures of a strap on a subway train. One has portrait mode, the other doesn’t:

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Video functions are just as good as it will do up to 4K resolution. Take this example which for best results, you should set to full screen and 4K:

For what it’s worth, The front facing camera is a 8-megapixel shooter. Regardless, the camera setup front and back really rocks.

Finally, the battery on the ZenFone 4 Pro is pretty impressive. There is a 3600mAh battery pack inside. That gave me almost two days of battery life. Thus if I can’t drain it in a business day, neither will you.

The ASUS ZenFone 4 Pro goes for $899 CAD unlocked. It’s easily the best phone that ASUS has made to date. And given all that it has, especially on the camera front, I say that this easily should be on your list if you’re in the market for a new phone.

One Response to “Review: ASUS ZenFone 4 Pro”

  1. […] reviewed a bunch of phones this year, but the ASUS ZenFone 4 Pro stood out to me because of the camera. I took it into an environment where it had to deal with a […]

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