|ASUS ZenFone 2 Laser Review, Focus At Will|
The ASUS ZenFone 2 Laser was launched in the Philippines a few months ago during the Zen Festival 2015, there were two variants at that time, a 5-incher with model number ZE500KL and the other one that is 0.5 inch bigger, which also what we got for this review, the ZE550KL.
As the name implies, one of the main features of this ZenFone is the laser sensor on its back that serves as an aid to the main camera for faster auto focus, we will talk about this capability later on at the camera and video section.
Unlike most ASUS smartphones that uses Intel chipset, the ZenFone 2 Laser is powered by Qualcomm SoC, Snapdragon 410 to be exact. Multitasking is handled by 2GB of RAM while on board storage space is 16GB expandable up to 128GB via micro SD card plus free lifetime 5GB of ASUS WebStorage.
ASUS ZenFone 2 Laser (ZE550KL) Unboxing and Hands-on Video
Our unit comes with the phone itself, detachable USB cable, charger, user guide and warranty card. There is no headset included in the box, but according to ASUS executive, the retail package will have one in it. To learn more about its physical appearance, you can watch our unboxing and hands-on video above.
As mentioned earlier, this ZenFone has 5.5-inch display with HD resolution, which translates to about 267 pixels per inch. The screen has IPS technology for wider viewing angles and covered with Corning Gorilla Glass 4 for added strength and protection against the usual scratches. In real life usage, the display is more than adequate for everyday use, the color reproduction is good, has enough brightness even under direct sunlight and images are naturally sharp.
See Also: ASUS ZenPad 7.0 Review, State of Focus
The ASUS ZenFone 2 Laser packs lots of sensors, apart from the usual accelerometer, proximity and ambient light sensors, it is also equipped with gyroscope, magnetic and hall sensors. All of the sensors are tested working using the apps above and in real world application.
The workhorse used by the ZenFone 2 Laser is Qualcomm Snapdragon 410, which is a 64-bit SoC with four Cortex-A53 CPU cores clocked at 1.2GHz each and Andreno 306 as its GPU coupled with 2GB of RAM. In terms of raw processing power, it got 24,549 in Antutu, 14,627 in Quadrant, 3,441 in PC Mark, 53.7fps in NenaMark2 and 1993, 912 and 1410 in Vellamo Browser, Metal and Multicore respectively. These scores are pretty much in the same range with other smartphones using the same chipset.
The ZenFone 2 Laser runs on Android 5.0.2 Lollipop with ZenUI on top, wherein almost everything can be customized. The user interface is almost identical, if not the same, across other ASUS devices such as ZenPad 7.0 and ZenFone 2. It has the ZenMotion for simpler, yet more intuitive gestures to interact with the phone, SnapView for privacy protection and Kids Mode with built-in parental control, these are just 3 of more than 1000 features of the ASUS ZenUI.
Also Read: ASUS ZenFone 2 Deluxe Launches in the Philippines for Php17,995
CAMERA and VIDEO:
|Camera and Video Interface|
The ZenUI is consistent in every aspect of the interface, the same is true in the camera UI and if you had used a Zen phone or tablet in the past, the look and feel are the same. For those who are neophyte with ZenUI, the camera app has a step-by-step tutorial, showing all its features and how you can maximize them.
|100% Crop of Above|
|100% Crop of Super Resolution|
The ZenFone 2 Laser is equipped with 13MP main camera, it may sound ordinary, but with the help of ASUS PixelMaster technology and the laser-guided focusing mechanism, it is able to produce great images with vivid colors, right amount of details and good dynamics. There are lots of shooting modes too, such as Manual wherein you can adjust some camera parameters manually, Super Resolution wherein it produces 50MP photos and Smart Remove wherein it eliminates moving item in the image.
1080p Sample Video
720p Sample Video
The main camera can shoot up to 1080p video at 30fps, the quality is not astonishing when compared to more expensive phone with the same capability, but overall it is more than passable.
|Clash of Clans|
Under the hood of the ZenFone 2 Laser is a 64-bit quad core Qualcomm processor combined with 2GB of LPDDR3 memory, this combination is more than enough to run casual games and some graphics intensive titles.
In terms of connectivity, all the basics are covered, dual SIM with high speed data connection via LTE, which can be shared via tethering, Bluetooth, WiFi and USB OTG function. It also comes with Digital Media Server, wherein it transforms the ZenFone 2 Laser to a wireless media hub, allowing other devices to access musics, photos and videos stored in it. In addition, it comes with ASUS proprietary ZenLink applications, namely PC Link that allows you to control the phone from a computer via USB or WiFi connection, Remote Link that turns the phone into a remote of PC and Share Link that allows you to easily share files to nearby Android device or PC.
Aside from the usual productivity and organizing tools, namely calculator, calendar, clock, file manager and sound recorder, the ZenFone 2 Laser also comes with ASUS' Do It Later, Quick Memo, SuperNote and WebStorage plus Google's Docs, Sheets, Slides and Drive.
|Location and GPS|
When the location mode is set to high accuracy, the phone managed to get a satellite lock in less than 30 seconds with an accuracy of about 10 feet. Meanwhile, location-based applications like Waze, Uber and Grab are all working properly with great precision.
The ZenFone 2 Laser has 3,000mAh removable battery, in PC Mark test, it managed to last more than 10 hours. We also used it as a backup phone wherein only few SMS, and less than 10 minutes of calls were made for two days, with that kind of usage, only 27% of the battery juice was consumed. Meanwhile, playing a 4-hour video brings down the battery life to 34%.
The ASUS ZenFone 2 Laser is one of the best mid-range Android smartphones in the market, it has nice design, solid build quality, decent performance and provides good user-experience, not to mention good value for money.
Good design and build quality
Decent camera with fast laser AF, tons of features and shooting modes
Above average battery life
Only 10.68GB of 16GB storage is available to the user
Plenty of pre-installed apps that cannot be uninstalled
ASUS ZenFone 2 Laser (ZE550KL) Specifications :
- Tetra band 2G/3G, hepta band LTE
- Dual micro SIM, dual standby
- 5.5-inch IPS capacitive HD (1280x720) touchscreen display, Corning Gorilla Glass 4 protection
- Dimensions: 152.5mm x 77.2mm x 3.9-10.8mm
- Weight: 170 grams
- Android 5.0.2 Lollipop with ASUS ZenUI
- 64-bit 1.2GHz quad core Cortex-A53 CPU, Adreno 306 GPU, Qualcomm Snapdragon 410 chipset
- 2GB of RAM
- 16GB internal storage, expandable up to 128GB via micro SD card, free 5GB ASUS WebStorage
- 13MP f/2.0 auto focus main camera with dual-tone LED flash, laser-guided auto focus
- 5MP secondary camera with LED flash
- Multimedia player
- 3.5mm audio jack
- GPS with A-GPS, GLONASS, BDS
- WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n
- Micro USB 2.0 with OTG support
- Bluetooth v4.0
- Sensors: accelerometer, light, proximity, hall, magnetic
- Removable 3,000mAh Li-Pol battery
- Price: Php8,695