Chip-Monks  ⁄  SmartPhones  ⁄  Phablet  ⁄  Asus ZenFone AR (ZS571KL)
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Released: Jan, 2017
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  • Display : 5.7 inches, Super AMOLED
  • Max OS : Android 7.0 Nougat
  • Storage : 128 GB
  • RAM : 8 GB
  • Body Material : Leather
  • Cameras : Rear: 23 MP, Front: 8 MP
  • Dimensions (L, B, W) : 6.07, 3.03, 0.31 in.
  • Connectivity : 4G, VoLTE

The Zenfone AR is the first ever phone to support Google’s AR platform Tango, and Google’s VR platform Daydream. In addition to that it is one of the very few high-end devices that support Tango. Daydream, one the other hand, is still the more mainstream of the two virtual reality platforms, and this phone joins the Pixel duo and Moto Z in supporting Google’s Daydream View. Regardless, both of these are still very new and are very rarely properly supported.

The phone comes with a 5.7-inch 2,560 x 1,440 display, which not only is one of the biggest screen at the moment support Daydream, but also has a resolution which is better than the average market standard of 1080 x 1920 pixels. This makes the Daydream apps and games look their best.

For the VR and AR to work well together, without the device taking much load, it needs to be quite a powerful device that they run on. Zenfone AR, with 8GB RAM, a Snapdragon 821 CPU and up to 256GB of internal storage, is exactly that. The phone runs of a 3,300 mAh battery, with USB-C and fast charging. With so much going on with the device, and quite honestly, a humungous screen, it seems like they could’ve done better with the battery.

As for the cameras are concerned, the phone comes with a 23 megapixel camera on the rear, with f/2.0 aperture, OIS (4-axis), 3x zoom, phase detection autofocus, depth & motion tracking sensors. Its features also include 1/2.6″ sensor size, 1 µm pixel size, geo-tagging, touch focus, face detection, HDR, panorama. The front camera is 8 megapixel, with f/2.0, and 1080p. With those numbers, the rear camera is quite certainly one of the best in the market, and while it does raise the question of ‘do we really need all that much’, with the perspective of virtual reality that might actually not be a bad decision to mount that monstrosity on the back.

The phone is a dual SIM (GSM and GSM) smartphone that accepts Micro-SIM and Nano-SIM. Connectivity options include Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth, NFC, 3G and 4G. Sensors on the phone include Compass Magnetometer, Proximity sensor, Accelerometer, Ambient light sensor, Gyroscope and Barometer.

While on the one hand Asus might have successfully crammed a lot of high-end tech into a single device, on the other their tweaked user interface is not being appreciated as much. The phone runs on Asus’s ZenUI version of Android 7.0 Nougat, and that seems to be quite a ghastly mixture of awful icons, weird notification bubbles and so many annoying screen transitions. It raises a question of should Asus have left Android by itself, instead of tweaking it to the extent of making it unpleasant?

While Daydream is the more mainstream of the two platforms, Tango AR platform is a little more obscure, having so far been limited to the bulky Lenovo Phab 2 Pro. The Zenfone AR uses the cameras to map your surroundings in quite a detailed and clever manner, enabling apps that fit clothes to your body and let you see how furniture will look in your lounge very accurately.

All in all the phone is phenomenal, and not only because it features both Tango AR and Daydream VR, but also because it comes with an amazing set of specs. The user interface might not be the best they could’ve done, but it would be worth seeing if people are willing to put up with that for the rest of the package.

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  • Cost : Rs. 250/-
  • Developer : GS Studio
  • Category : Productivity
  • Downloads : 234
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