Asus ZenFone Max fulfills the purpose its born for – to offer maximum battery power, and the rest of the aspects like camera and performance, it does not do any bad
Screen Size – 5.5 inch
Display – 1280*720 FHD
Processor- Qualcom Snapdragon 1.2 Ghz
Storage- 2GB RAM, 32 GB
Camera- Rear 13 MP with autofocus and flash, 5 MP front
OS- Android 6.0 Marshmallow
Networks – 4GLTE
Battery – 5000 mAh Li-Ion
We, at technology media, get various products for review, sometimes after the launch of the product and at times before the launch. These products are shipped to us in varied packaging – at times just the normal phone box with traditional packaging and some other times with some fancy packets. But when Asus sent its new device in a mysterious plastic box with a kind of unknown code with instructions that the combination lock code will only be revealed on the day of launch, we anticipated something very interesting, something very new. However, Asus got us tricked. The box contained a 5 month old phone with some upgradations – both on software as well as on hardware front.
The box contained the new Asus ZenFone Max, the upgraded version of the old Max that was launched in January this year. The old ZenFone Max had Qualcomm Snapdragon 410 chipset with quad core 1.2 Ghz processor, 2 GB RAM with 8 or 16 GB internal storage variants, 13 megapixel rear camera and 5 megapixel front camera. As the name suggests, the device was carrying a mammoth 5000 mAh battery.
The new ZenFone Max is not very new. In place of 410 chipset, it used 615 chipset which appears old in current time if we look at some other brands who are shipping their smartphones with the latest chipsets, and that too at the same price point. There is no addition on the RAM or on camera front in the new Max. The battery capacity also remained the same, nevertheless, it is more than enough- a mammoth 5000 mAh. The OS, however, is upgraded to Marshmallow.
So, what’s the point?
There’s a strong case for Asus phones in the Indian market. Seems like a standard, Asus phones are well built, sturdy and looks decent on hand. The Taiwanese phone maker, perhaps, is not in the rat race of bringing out model-looking smartphones that are stylish and slim. What Asus does best is to bring good, long-lasting, sturdy devices that fulfill your prime need – to use the phone features for what it is made for. And in that part, Asus doesn’t fail very often.
The Asus ZenFonne Max is undoubtedly a good looking phone with good specifications. The front side looks the same for all Asus ZenFone models with the front camera, ear piece and the proximity sensor residing at the top left of the phone. Its a standard feature for all Asus phones. The back cover, though made of plastic, gives a leathery feel. The physical buttons – volume rocker and Power/Sleep are placed on the left side. The frame of the phone deceives an user as metal but its actually hardened metalic plastic, though the physical buttons are metal. The back side sports the rear camera, the dualtone flash and the laser sensor. The signature Asus logo is placed beneath the camera compartment. The bottom end of the back panel has the ‘ZenFone’ brand logo printed and below that lies the speaker grill. Overall, its not a bad looking phone.
The Asus ZenFone Max is not that bad on brains as well. Replacing the old 410 chipset, the new Max employed the Qualcomm 615 chipset. Though its not the latest from Qualcomm’s stable, it works perfectly fine and gives optimum output in terms of performance with 1.2 Ghz speed. The 2GB RAM is a downer, Asus could have shipped a 3GB RAM, as the cost of RAM up to 3GB has come down drastically in the last eight months. From the old one, this device comes with 32 GB in place of 8 or 16 GB.
On the camera front, the XenFone Max comes with an 13 megapixel rear camera with laser autofocus feature. 13 megapixel seems to be the standard for smartphones priced in sub Rs10,000 category. Photo output wise, the camera of this devices is giving better result than the 13-MP camera of the old Max. It could be because of the upgradation of the camera software or the combined effect of camera software as well as the upgraded Android OS.
In terms of performance, we did not feel any slack in any aspect. And yes, we didn’t benchmark it against a 4GB RAM, 2.3 Ghz processor phone. Neither did we check it with a 16 MP or 21 MP camera. If you pit this phone against other phones with similar configuration, you would not be disappointed. However, its not a device to play high stake games.
First Thing Last
The Asus ZenFone Max was not launched to give you premium feel, or anything ultra stylish. It was simply launched to give you ‘MAXimum’ battery power. The phone comes with 5000 mAh Li-Ion battery and lasts almost two days with moderate use. it gave me clean 20 hour in continuous use, and in standby mode – I don’t remember when I charged it last. This is perhaps the best battery output I have seen in any phone in recent times. Besides, you can use the battery power to charge your other phone- in reverse charging mode.
Overall, the phone does what its made for. It does not promise any fancy offerings, does not claim to be the best phone and is not the slimmest, but at the same time, does offer the maximum battery back up and performs well.