Asus landed a surprise hit with the Zenfone 6 last year, combining a clean build of Android with an affordable price tag and a unique flip camera. This year, the company wanted to build on the momentum it gained with its special device and went all-in on its custom camera arrangement with two new Zenfone 7 devices, both now housing three lenses. The upgrade to a 90Hz AMOLED panel is also more than welcome.
This time around, Asus has two devices in its lineup: the regular Zenfone 7 and the Zenfone 7 Pro. There are only some small differences between the two, and none of them are truly apparent from the outside. The Zenfone 7 has a Snapdragon 865 as opposed to the 865+ in the Pro variant, less RAM, less on-board storage, and no OIS — everything else is the same.
Both Zenfone 7 phones have a clean and understated back apart from the massive camera array complete with its flipping mechanism, now home to three lenses: a 64MP primary Sony camera, a 12MP Sony wide-angle, and a 3x zoom 8MP telephoto. The motor is rated for up to 200,000 flips, double the amount of the Zenfone 6. Underneath the back glass, a halo effect makes a green glow appear on the black version, depending on how light falls in. The Asus logo is as prominent as it can get, but that's a matter of taste.
On the bottom, you'll find a USB-C port, a speaker, and a notification LED while the top is left free for the flip cameras. The right side of the phone houses the volume rocker and the power button with an integrated fingerprint reader. Looking at the front, you're greeted by an uninterrupted 6.67-inch FHD+ Samsung AMOLED display with an aspect ratio of 20:9 and a refresh rate of 90Hz (which is quite an upgrade from last year's smaller LCD screen). There's no notch to be seen anywhere, though the bottom bezel is a bit bigger than the one on the top. When you turn on the display, you're greeted by Android 10 and Asus's lightweight ZenUI 7.
|Display||6.67“ FHD+ Samsung all-screen AMOLED display, 92% screen-to-body ratio, 20:9 ratio, 90Hz refresh rate, 1ms response time, 200Hz touch sampling rate, 110% DCI-P3 color space, Delta E<1 color accuracy, 100000 :1 contrast ratio, 700 nit outdoor readable brightness, Corning Gorilla Glass 6|
|Software||Android 10 with ZenUI 7|
|CPU||Zenfone 7 Pro:
3.1 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 Plus 5G
2.84GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 5G
|RAM/Storage||Zenfone 7 Pro:
8GB LPDDR5 / 256GB UFS 3.1, up to 2TB microSD card, NTFS support for external HDD
6GB or 8GB LPDDR5 / 128GB UFS 3.1, up to 2TB microSD card, NTFS support for external HDD
|Battery||5,000mAh, up 30W fast charging, supports PD3.0|
|Cameras||Zenfone 7 Pro:
64MP SONY IMX686 flagship sensor, Quad Bayer Technology, F1.8, 0.8μm/1.6μm effective pixel size, 1/1.7", 2x1 OCL PDAF, Dual LED flash, OIS, 8K video recording with EIS
12MP, SONY IMX363 flagship sensor, 113 ̊ ultrawide, 1.4μm pixel size, Dual PDAF, Real-time distortion correction
3x telephoto zoom with OIS
Same as Pro but without OIS
|Connectivity||Integrated WiFi 6 (802.11a/b/g/n/ac/ax, 2x2 MIMO)
Dual-band 2.4 GHz / 5 GHz WiFi
Bluetooth® 5.1 (BR/EDR+LE), supports Qualcomm® aptXTM Adaptive
|Miscellaneous||Side fingerprint sensor (0.3 seconds unlock, supports 5 fingerprints), stereo speakers, dual-SIM support (5G/4G or 4G/4G)|
|Bands||Supports EN-DC (5DL+FR1)
FR1: DL up to 3.6 Gbps / UL 542 Mbps
LTE 5CA: DL Cat 19 up to 1.8 Gbps / UL Cat 13 up to 150 Mbps
DC-HSPA+: DL 42 Mbps / UL 5.76 Mbps
4x4 MIMO and CA with 4x4 MIMO support
FDD-LTE (Bands 1, 2, 3,4, 5, 7, 8, 12, 17, 18, 19, 20, 26, 28, 29)
TD-LTE (Bands 38, 39, 40, 41)
WCDMA (Bands 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 19)
EDGE/GPRS/GSM (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz)
5G Non-Standalone (NSA): n1, n2, n3, n5, n7, n8, n12, n20, n28, n38, n77, n78
5G Standalone (SA): n77, n78
|Measurements||165.08 x 77.28 x 9.6mm, 230 grams|
|Colors||Aurora Black, Pastel White|
Both Zenfones have the same 5,000mAh battery we know from the Zenfone 6, though the unique camera setup coupled with that huge battery forced the company to make some compromises: There's no wireless charging and no waterproofing certification. A headphone jack is also missing from this year's phones.
Unfortunately, the Zenfone 7 won't officially make it to the US as it doesn't support 5G bands in the country. You can still import it and use it on 4G networks, though, which will probably be a viable solution if you're interested — 5G still isn't an absolute necessity these days.
International prices haven't been fully announced yet, either, but Asus has shared that the Zenfone 7 will cost NT$21,990 (about $750/€630) in Taiwan, and the Zenfone 7 Pro will go for NT$27,990 (about $950/€800). It looks like the Zenfone 7 is not quite the bargain the 6th generation used to be, but if that's the international price, it's still very aggressive compared to Samsung's latest flagships, especially when you look at the entry-level Zenfone.