We have spent some time with the device and this is what we think of it.
Asus has today announced the launch of its latest budget-centric smartphone and the rightful heir of its Zenfone Max Pro M1 in India. Dubbed as Zenfone Max Pro M2, the smartphone will be exclusively available on Flipkart. The Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 comes in three variants - 3GB of RAM with 32GB of internal storage for Rs 12,999, 4GB RAM with 64GB internal storage priced at Rs 14,999, and 6GB RAM with 64GB storage option is priced at Rs 16,999.
Asus did something incredible when it introduced the Zenfone Max Pro M1. The smartphone was an instant hit, all thanks to its competitive specs at a pretty aggressive price point. Now, the brand is all set to do the same thing with the Zenfone Max Pro M2. But will it be successful? We have spent some time with the device and this is what we think of it.
Design and Display
Asus has taken a completely different approach with the new Zenfone device. Unlike its predecessor, which came with a metal unibody design, the Zenfone Max Pro M2 features a fibre glass body with a glossy finish, giving a different look. The front of the device now comes with a notch. The feels lighter and it is comfortable to hold in your hand. The phone is protected with Corning Gorilla Glass 6 protection, meaning that it can resist some damages when it falls on the ground. But that is one claim that is yet to test.
The notch present at the front panel comes with a selfie camera and LED flash. The right of the device sports volume controls and power on/off button, while the left features dual-SIM slot. The top is bare, while at the base, you will find 3.5mm audio jack coupled with micro USB port and speaker grille. That said, the phone does give a premium look and feel, but it does not stand out of the crowd as its competition like Realme 2 Pro and more features a similar body design.
On the display front, the Zenfone Max Pro M2 features a 6.26-inch Full HD+ display with a screen resolution of 2180 x 1080 pixels. The screen looks good and the texts are sharp enough. The display is bright and you can thank the 450nits brightness for that. Viewing angles seems to be decent and you will not notice any major colour shifting when viewed from different angles.
Hardware and Software
The phone is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 processor coupled with Adreno 512 GPU. It will be available in different memory options. There is a 3GB+ 32GB model, a 4GB+64GB option and 6GB+64GB variant. The memory can be further expanded up to 2TB via microSD card slot. Although it is too early to comment on the computing power of the latest smartphone, judging by the sheer specs sheet, the phone will face a tough competition with Realme 2 Pro, Xiaomi Redmi Note 6 Pro, Nokia 6.1 Plus, and Honor Play.
On the software front, the Zenfone Max Pro M2 is equipped with an Android 8.1 Oreo with the company’s custom ZenUI running on top of it. Just like Zenfone Max Pro M1, this smartphone also features a user interface that is close-to-stock. The user interface works smoothly and you will not find much of bloatware, which was a major problem in previous generations of ZenUI.
On the camera front, the Zenfone Max Pro M2 is equipped with a dual-camera setup. The primary lens with a 12-megapixel Sony IM486 sensor with f/1.8 aperture, 27mm focal length, 6 element lens, phase autofocus and LED flash coupled with a 5-megapixel secondary shooter with 84-degree Field of view. For the front, there is a 13-megapixel shooter with f/2.0 aperture, 26mm focal length, LED flash and face unlock.
The camera UI is pretty easy to understand and it comes with a host of different modes including Auto, Pro, HDR, Sports and Night. The camera also supports up to 4K recording at 30fps. That said, we clicked some photos from this smartphone and it was fast to focus. The photos came out to be decent and the detailing was good as well. However, in some cases, we felt that the smartphone was not able to focus while talking some macro shots. We will talk more about this in our upcoming review.
Battery and Connectivity
On the battery front, the device is backed by a 5000mAh battery, which it claims to deliver up to 10 hours of gaming, up to 19 hours of playback and more. The phone comes with a 10W charger. On the connectivity front, it supports 4G VoLTE, Bluetooth 5.0, WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, GPS, GLONASS, BDS, headphone jack, fingerprint sensor and micro USB port.
The Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 seems to be a pretty interesting device. The phone is equipped with a new design language, which has now become a standard in this price band coupled with some good display. The computing power seems to be competitive and it would be interesting to see whether it will be able to compete with likes of Realme 2 Pro, Xiaomi Redmi Note 6 Pro, and the other Pros from different smartphone manufacturers.
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