Finally catching up with CES 2017 and it was great to see so many exciting items on the horizon. The new ASUS Zenfone AR is perhaps the device that really stood out from the pack. With AR (augmented reality) finally starting to take off, ASUS pushes out a smartphone with AR built-in at the perfect time.
DISPLAY AND PROCESSOR
It may not be the first phone to feature Google Tango built-in, but it may be the best looking one. With its sleek design and leather-like finish, the ASUS Zenfone AR features a large 5.7" Quad HD (2560 x 1440) Super AMOLED display and has a pixel density of 515 ppi (pixels per inch). It has a fantastic screen-to-body ratio of 79% and Corning Gorilla Glass 4. On top of having Google Tango built-in, the device is also Daydream-ready and has a 64-bit 2.35 GHz Quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 processor with an Adreno 530 GPU under the hood. The processor has also been optimized for Tango. Additionally, the Zenfone AR comes pre-loaded with Android 7.0 Nougat with the brand new ASUS ZenUI 3.0 skin and is the first smartphone to feature a whopping 8GB of RAM.
BATTERY AND STORAGE
To keep the lights on, ASUS included a 3300 mAh non-removable battery with BoostMaster Fast Charging which provides 60% of juice in just 39 minutes of charging. Unfortunately, it does not appear that this device has wireless charging built-in.
As far as storage goes, the device will be sold with up to 256GB of internal memory and has a micro SD slot for expandable memory of up to 2TB. ASUS is also providing 100GB of free Google Drive storage for two years and 5GB free for life of ASUS WebStorage.
Now the interesting part. The ASUS Zenfone AR comes equipped with three rear cameras as part of their innovative TriCam system. The first is a 23-megapixel snapper which features one of the latest Sony IMX 318 sensors that will allow you to capture and view virtual objects in your real-time environment in gorgeous detail. The second is a motion tracking camera that lets the Zenfone AR track its location as it moves through space. The third is a depth sensing camera with an infrared projector that lets the device measure its distance from real-world objects. The trio of cameras enable the phone to create a three-dimensional model of its surroundings and track its motion, so it can see the world just as the individual operating the device does. Additionally, an 8-megapixel camera occupies the front of the device with an f/2.0 aperture and Dual-LED real tone flash.
Google Tango apps, such as GAP AR, let's you see how clothes look on you without physically trying them on. There are also apps that allow you to see how furniture fits around the house without doing the heavy lifting. The possibilities are endless with this technology.
No wireless charging
Not water resistant
Lack of color options
Price and release date is unknown at this point, but the device is expected to be released sometime in the second quarter of 2017. It is also unknown which markets will be getting the phone. Hopefully the United States is one of them.