The Asus ZenFone V is an impressive midrange smartphone exclusive to Verizon

zenfone v
The ZenFone series from Asus’ has always been a bit confusing. Take the ZenFone 4, for instance, which was subsequently spun off into six models — the Deluxe, the Laser, the Zoom, the Selfie, the Selfie Pro, and the Max — before launching in the U.S. as the Asus ZenFone 4. Asus pared things back for the ZenFone 4’s sequel, the ZenFone V, but took a slightly different tack. Instead of launching the phone unlocked, it signed an exclusivity deal with Verizon Wireless.

Here is everything you need to know about the ZenFone V, including the hardware specs, price, and release date.

Design, display, and speakers

The ZenFone V’s design won’t take home any trophies, but it’s as slim, sleek, and shiny as you’d expect given the phone’s price point. Diamond-cut curved corners glimmer like jewelry in direct light, and the rear cover’s concentric Gorilla Glass radiates outward from the ZenFone V’s square-shaped camera.

zenfone v

The ZenFone V’s 5.2-inch AMOLED, Full HD (1,920 x 1,080 pixels) screen dominates the front. At a 74.8 percent screen-to-body ratio, it’s not quite edge-to-edge — the ZenFone V’s bottom bezel is wide enough to fit a fingerprint sensor and two touch-sensitive navigation buttons — but you won’t have to worry about your thumbs cramping up.

Rounding out the screen is a five-magnet speaker that’s 20 percent louder and has 42 percent lower distortion than its predecessors. Asus claims that the the ZenFone V’s proprietary AMP technology can achieve up to 17 percent deeper bass than the competition, which sounds impressive.

Cameras

The ZenFone 4 featured pretty darn good cameras for the money, and the ZenFone V is no different. Its 24-megapixel f/2.0 sensor — Sony’s IMX 318 — uses a combination of optical image stabilization (OIS), electronic image stabilization (EIS), and the company’s in-house TriTech autofocus to home in on subjects in 0.03 seconds. The ZenFone V’s deep trench isolation technology prevents light from leaking from one pixel to another, and an RGB color correction sensor optimizes the camera’s settings for ambient light.

zenfone v

The ZenFone V takes great videos, too, thanks to a noise-reducing OIS technique that lets the camera use shutter speeds up to four stops slower than normally possible and EIS that corrects for shakes and sharp movement. It can shoot up to 4K resolution, and up to 92-megapixel stills using Asus’s photo-stitching Super Resolution mode.

Specs

Under the ZenFone V’s hood is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor paired with 4GB of RAM, which isn’t the newest system on chip out there — the Samsung Galaxy S8, LG V30, and Google Pixel pack the Snapdragon 835. But the 14nm, 2.15GHz chip is enough to boost the ZenFone V’s performance 50 percent from the previous generation while reducing power consumption by 35 percent.

Powering the processor is a 3,000mAh battery that supports fast-charging technology. Asus says that a compatible charger can deliver up to 60 percent capacity in 37 minutes.

Price and release date

The ZenFone V is a Verizon Wireless exclusive. It’s available now starting at $16 per month on a payment plan, or $384 full retail price.

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