Asus unveiled the ZenFone line of mobile devices back at the Consumer Electronics Show last month and are expected sometime this quarter.
Asus hasn’t yet announced a definite release date for its ZenFone line, but if rumors from the sometimes reliable Digitimes hold true the company is set to launch a marketing blitz for the phones next month.
The ZenFone line is Asus’ answer to the Moto G. The Taiwanese manufacturer is getting ready to launch three new devices in this line, with screen sizes of 4, 5 and 6 inches. All devices in the ZenFone line will be available for under $200, and will run Intel’s hardware in lieu of MediaTek or Qualcomm. Taiwanese site Digitimes claims that Asus is ready to start marketing the ZenFone line in China, Southeast Asia and other emerging markets in March.
The entry-level device in the ZenFone line is the ZenFone 4, which comes with a 4-inch screen and a resolution of 480 x 800. The device comes with Intel’s 1.2 GHz dual-core Atom Z2520 CPU along with a PowerVR SGX544MP2 GPU. Other hardware details include 1 GB RAM, 4 GB internal memory, microSD card slot, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, 3G, Bluetooth 4.0, microUSB 2.0, 5 MP camera and a 1170 mAh battery.
The next handset is the ZenFone 5, which comes with a 5-inch 720p screen. The ZenFone 5 comes with Intel’s 2 GHz dual-core Atom Z2580 CPU, which is the same used in the ZenFone 6 as well. In fact, both devices are very similar as far as the hardware is concerned. The ZenFone 5 comes with 4 GB internal memory, 1 GB RAM, 8 MP camera, similar connectivity as the ZenFone 4 and a 2,050 mAh battery.
With the ZenFone 6, Asus is offering high-end hardware in the form of a 6-inch 720p screen, 2 GB RAM, Intel 2 GHz dual-core Atom Z2580, 16 GB internal memory, 13 MP camera, Wi-Fi, 3G, Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity and a 3,230 mAh battery.
All three ZenFone devices will come with Android 4.3 Jelly Bean on Asus’ custom Zen UI. While the ZenFone 4 does feature underwhelming hardware, Asus is set to retail it for just $100. The ZenFone 5, with its 720p screen and 8 MP camera is a great buy for $150, and the ZenFone 6 similarly comes with great hardware for a device that costs just $200.
Asus managed only one million mobile handset sales in 2013, and its ambitions of increasing that number to ten million is ambitious. It is targeting emerging markets, where there is a lot of demand for reliable budget handsets, but it also has to contend against the likes of ZTE, Huawei and Lenovo in China, where they have a firm stronghold.