ASUS Review: the Good, the Bad, and the Awesome

ASUS Review: the Good, the Bad, and the Awesome - Lovefone, London

Laptop and PC manufacturer ASUS wants to cash in its chips and win big with its new line of smartphones and mobile devices, but are they worth it? How do they stack up against iPhone and other products we know and love? ...And who is ASUS anyway? It’s not a name that comes to mind when thinking of smartphones, but it might soon be up there with Samsung and Apple.

In 1989, a group of four ambitious hardware engineers all working for the same company, decided to strike out on their own and developed ASUS, a humble little tech enterprise that made motherboards. Today, nearly 30 years after its launch, ASUS designs and manufactures everything from laptops to flat screen TVs to sophisticated data storage. The hard-working, Taiwanese "multinational computer hardware and electronics company” continues to grow and expand its product line, and in 2013 the business boasted a $21.4 billion profit. According to the ASUS website, “ASUS takes its name from PegASUS, the winged horse in Greek mythology that symbolizes wisdom and knowledge. ASUS embodies the strength, purity, and adventurous spirit of this fantastic creature, and soars to new heights with each new product it creates.” Wow. That's quite a lofty promise from a tech company. Let's see if ASUS can take that vision and manifest it into quality products, by taking a peek at some of their newest, fresh off the line devices.

ASUS' ZenWatch 2, with a starting price tag of only $150, is one of the most affordable smartwatches on the market. It has a 1.63 inch face with 320 pixels. Unlike other Android Wear watches, the watch faces are interchangeable, as are its straps. Its battery life is also pretty impressive, as a one hour charge will last you the entire day. The ZenWatch is compatible with many phones, including iPhone. However, a serious downfall of this smartwatch is that it doesn't include a heart-rate monitor. This means that a ton of the fitness apps won't work properly. You could use it for things other than your workout, but fitness is arguably one of the main reasons people want a smartwatch in the first place. If you long for the true AppleWatch experience, however pricey, there's really nothing like the original.

ASUS' Zenfone Zoom smartphone is one of its current showpieces, though it'll set you back a cool $400. It has an Intel Atom 3580 chipset, and claims to be the worlds's thinnest 3X optical zoom smartphone. The phone's outward design is admittedly fun, offering a faux-leather back, and featuring a circular plastic disk that holds the camera construction. The phone's general performance is average at best, but the 10-element Hoya lens is what sets it apart from other smartphones. This sophisticated lens allows you to magnify up to 12 times. Truly outstanding photographic zoom quality makes it a serious contender for photo lovers who want to take pictures on their phone that honestly come out as crisp as if they were taken on an actual standalone camera. Because when you're viewing the world through your smartphone's camera lens, you want it to look as good as possible.

Asus Zenphone Zoom white

Whether you choose an ASUS phone, iPhone, or even if you're sticking with the same faithful standby you've had for years, make sure you care for it properly to get the most out of it for as long as possible. Investing in a good smartphone case can go a long way toward keeping your phone safe from drops and breaks, and looking as pristine as the day it arrived. And don’t underestimate the value of protective software. In this area, ASUS has you covered.

Many smartphones now have Adblock available to download. This is nothing new. ASUS went a step further with their phones, and will soon be adding a built-in ad-blocker to all of their new smartphones and mobile devices. Unlike with Apple and android smartphones, it's not something you have to search out and download from the App Store or Google Play. Adblock Plus comes standard on these new ASUS phones, and is actually embedded in its own browser, so when you open it up the first day you're automatically protected, and even if you find yourself needing a complete factory reset, the phone's default settings unquestionably keep the ad-block program it was built with, no need to remember to go back and download it again. Although, a factory reset may never be necessary since the ad-blocker even stops pop-up ads that potentially contain malware that could threaten to destroy your phone.

Published
April 20, 2016