Though ASUS has the ROG Phone to cater to a niche gaming community, it has also lauded the Zenfone Max Pro M2 as a midrange alternative. Today we’re pitting it against another phone with a similar goal, which is the Honor Play. Which one is the better buy? Read on to find out!
Design & Construction
In terms of design, it’s a question of aesthetics vs ergonomics with these two. The Honor Play truly looks like it was designed for gaming due to its smudge-proof back panel and rounded edges that make it comfortable to grip horizontally while gaming. On the other hand, though the Max Pro M2 carries a mesmerizing design its smooth back panel is a definite smudge magnet and can easily slip out of grip especially when held for a prolonged period of time.
Nevertheless, both phones are very similar in size and weight with the M2 going the extra mile with its Corning Gorilla Glass 6 front panel. The M2 and the Honor Play also have added security features such as a rear-mounted fingerprint sensor.
The Zenfone Max Pro M2 has an already impressive 6.26-inch display with a screen resolution of 1080 x 2280 px and a pixel density of 403ppi. Meanwhile, the Honor Play only won by a small margin with its 6.3-inch display, 1080 x 2340 px screen resolution, and a pixel density of 409ppi. These differences are hardly noticeable but on paper, the Honor Play dominates this round.
Improving upon its predecessor’s flaws, the M2 now dons an AI-powered 12MP+5MP dual rear camera and a 13MP front camera. The Honor Play still takes the cake with its 16MP+2MP dual rear camera and 16MP front camera. If anything, the only ace that ASUS has at this point is that the M2 carries a much more advanced set of AI features. Since the AI in the M2’s camera app no longer needs to be switched on (it’s already always on), that makes it easier for users to take better pictures compared to the Honor Play.
Since the M2 and Honor Play are using chipsets from different manufacturers, we think it only fair to compare them based on what tier it falls on: the M2’s Snapdragon 660 (even with improved AI enhancements) is still a midranger, while the Honor Play’s Kirin 970 processor is usually seen on Huawei and Honor’s higher-end phones–instantly making the Honor Play the better bang for your buck. Add to this the fact that the Honor Play now has support for GPU turbo which further accelerates graphics processing speed.
Both the M2 and Honor Play comes in two RAM variants: 4GB and 6GB, with a 64GB storage. The M2 comes with an additional 3GB RAM + 32GB Storage as well. In terms of battery capacity, the M2 wins on this category as there are hardly any other phones of this price range that carry a 5,000mAh battery. The Honor Play, in comparison only has a 3,750mAh battery which is understandable as they had to scrimp on some features to be able to offer quality specs at a low price.
|Zenfone Max Pro M2||Honor Play|
|Processor||Snapdragon 660 AIE||Kirin 970|
|Memory||3GB RAM + 32GB Storage, 4GB/6GB RAM + 64GB Storage, expandable to 256GB via microSD||4GB/6GB RAM, 64GB Storage, expandable to 256GB via microSD|
|Display||6.26 inches, 1080 x 2280 screen resolution, 403 ppi||6.3 inches, 1080 x 2340 screen resolution, 409 ppi|
|Rear Camera||12MP, 5MP||16MP, 2MP|
|Batttery||Non-removable Li-ion 5,000mAh||Non-removable Li-ion 3,750mAh|
|OS||Android 8.1||Android 8.1|
|Sensors||Fingerprint (rear-mounted), accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass||Fingerprint (rear-mounted), accelerometer, gyro, proximity, compass|
|Network||GSM, HSPA, LTE||GSM, CDMA, HSPA, LTE|
|Colors||Blue, Titanium||Midnight Black, Navy Blue, Violet, Player Edition Red, Player Edition Black|
In conclusion, though the Zenfone Max Pro M2 already offers great value for its price of Php 14,995, opting for the Honor Play at Php 15,990 is definitely well worth it. Even judging from both a gaming or casual use standpoint, the Honor Play can already deliver high-end performance at a midranger’s price tag!