The ZTE Axon came to the U.S. at the end of July, and impressed with its strong feature list, unique features, and low unconnected price. Now, ZTE has done the right thing and announced an international version of the phone, known as the Axon Elite, and it has sensibly kept the same formula — with one or two interesting additions.
ZTE highlights the security aspects of the Axon Elite, because it can be biometrically secured in three different ways — using your voice, your fingerprint, or an eye scan. We’ve seen these on other ZTE phones before, but this is one of the first times all three are coming together on a single device.
Voice control and authentication was demonstrated well on the ZTE Star, and the eye scanner on the Grand S3 and more recently, the Blade S6 also works well. EyeVerify — the company behind the eye scanning tech inside ZTE’s phone — has said both fingerprint and eye scanning security complement each other perfectly.
The Axon Elite connects to a wide range of global GSM 4G LTE bands, and is being touted as the first in a series of Axon-branded flagship devices. In China, an Axon smartwatch has already been revealed, but sadly there’s no sign of an international release yet.
Otherwise, the spec is the same as the U.S. model. It has a 5.5-inch, 1080p display hidden behind a piece of 2.5D glass. It’s a slice of Corning’s new antimicrobial Gorilla Glass too — which you’ll only find fitted to the Axon at the moment. The phone uses a Snapdragon 810 processor with 3GB of RAM, plus there’s 32GB of storage space, a MicroSD card slot, and a big 3000mAh quick-charge battery.
Android 5.0 Lollipop has ZTE’s MiFavor UI over the top. There’s also a 13-megapixel/2-megapixel dual-camera setup on the rear — for taking pictures with a strong depth of field — a 2-megapixel selfie camera, and a high-performance audio system.
ZTE will launch the Axon Elite on Sept. 24 through eBay in the U.K., France, Spain, Italy and Germany, where it will cost 420 euros, or £300. Additionally, it’ll also be sold in Turkey, Mexico, Singapore, Russia, Hong Kong, Thailand, Malaysia, and the Philippines.