Much like its previous scenes, this year’s Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona, Spain saw a number of exciting announcements in the world of mobile consumer technology, including the introduction of Taiwanese mobile giant ASUS’s newest smartphone range, the ASUS ZenFone 5 lineup. We got the chance to spend time to what is considered as the youngest member of the lineup, the ASUS ZenFone 5Q. Here’s our first impression about the said device.
One look at the ASUS ZenFone 5Q and anyone would really notice the premium look that it exudes. It’s back and front physique comes covered in glass, which we must say is the main reason why this smartphone is a looker. However, a closer look at the ASUS ZenFone 5Q’s body will reveal a form-factor which has a plasticky feel to it. Its body is also a fingerprint magnet so we suggest using its jelly case that’s included in its package.
Speaking of its box contents, aside from the jelly case and the phone itself, the ASUS ZenFone 5Q comes with the usual accessories like the charger, power adapter, earbuds, ejecting pin, and the usual paperwork.
Situated on top of the device are its 3.5mm headphone jack and the noise-cancelling microphone. On the right side are the standard buttons like the volume rocker and the power stud, while at the bottom are the microUSB port and the main microphone. The ASUS ZenFone 5Q has twin speaker grilles but like most smartphones with this usual setup, only one of the speakers really works, while the other one is just plain accessory.
While smartphones with large screen isn’t really attractive for some people, the ASUS ZenFone 5Q easily carries itself with an expansive 6-inch screen in 18:9 screen resolution. This is further emphasized by the lack of the physical capacitive buttons. For the ASUS ZenFone 5Q, ASUS decided to put the back, home, and recent buttons on-screen, paving way for thinner bottom bezels.
On paper, the ASUS ZenFone 5Q has a resolution of 2160 x 1080 but honestly, its screen looked like it has a 720p resolution when we first laid eyes on it. Its screen colors appeared a little dull for us. Its 2.5D curved glass adds a nice touch to the phone, though, and its IPS screen provides the phone with wide-viewing angles and bright colors that’s visible even when used under sunlight.
Under the hood, the ASUS ZenFone 5Q comes with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 octa-core chipset clocked at 2.2GHz coupled with an Adreno 508 GPU. Its storage and memory comes with a combination of 4GB RAM and 64GB of internal storage expandable via microSD support. We’ve yet to put the ASUS ZenFone 5Q to extensive benchmark tests to evaluate its score and we’re saving it for our full review, but so far, this device has given us a lag-free experience in switching to different apps and playing different types of games. However, we noticed that it has a slight delay when using its camera which is evident from the moment we press the capture button to the point that the image preview should be shown.
The ASUS ZenFone 5Q, although launched this year, comes with only an Android 7.1.1 Nougat. This is somehow a downside though, since most phones with the same price range already has an Android 8.0 OS out of the box. Similar to other ASUS ZenFone models, the ZenFone 5Q has pre-installed ZenFone apps intended for productivity and device boosting.
In terms of its imaging department, the ASUS ZenFone 5Q boasts a quad-camera setup with two rear cameras and two selfie shooters. Its has a combination of a 20-megapixel normal lens + 8-megapixel 120-degree wide-angle lens. Upfront is a 16-megapixel + 8-megapixel 120-degree wide angle selfie snapper with LED flash.
Our initial camera test with the ASUS ZenFone 5 resulted to middling performance as its main camera provides good shots with vibrant colors and clear details only when used under well-lit conditions. Under dim and gloomy scenarios, the photos lack sharpness and appear hazy. We also noticed that its wide-angle lens often gave us shots with evident noise on it.
The same goes with its selfie camera. Photos taken under bright environments were decent and acceptable, but night and dim shots, especially those taken using the wide-angle selfie lens appear soft and cloudy.
Under its dual rear cameras, the ASUS ZenFone 5Q has its fingerprint sensor for seamless and secured unlocking. We find its fingerprint sensor responsive to our taps except when we have sweaty hands.
Powered by a 3,300mAh battery, the ASUS ZenFone 5Q which is enough for a whole day of full usage. As mentioned earlier, this device has an old-fashioned microUSB port, meaning it doesn’t have that same fast-charging technology that smartphones with a USB Type-C port have. More details about its battery including battery modes as well as the results of our benchmark and video loop test will be up on our full review.
The ASUS ZenFone 5Q is priced at PhP 14,995.