Asus Zenfone Max Review

Can you tell? I was a closet mobile phone geek. Before Joy, that is. Then, if you asked, I would be able to make mobile phone recommendations for your specific lifestyle and habits. Each time our phones get updated, I would also be the one customizing the settings for both the hubs and I to suit, and the one who taught him how to use our new phones.

I am not an android user (hello from the other side!) and when presented with the chance to review this phone, thought it to be the perfect opportunity to experience an android phone.

Look

Looks wise, this phone is right up my alley. Simple, clean and comfortable to hold, even in my slightly smaller hands. I would prefer the white phone but black is a more practical choice.

Button Access

Good tactile feedback and located at a comfortable position to the right side of the phone.

Port & microphone

The Zenfone Max can be used to charge other devices and I really like that the port is a MicroUSB – it means I can use existing adaptors I own without buying new ones.

Headphone Jack

My pet peeve is to have the headphone jack on top of my phone. That means that I will have one wire sticking out on top and one wire sticking out below if I’m listening to music while charging the phone, which is often.

Speakers

Speakers are located at the back bottom of the Zenfone. It looks sophisticated and classy but when I place the Zenfone on the table, sounds get muted.

Camera

Like many phones, the back camera sticks out of the back of the phones, not level with the body of the Zenfone. I normally find casing that levels the back camera to the body of my phones but I’m unlikely to do so with this phone, for superficial reasons – I like the back feel of the phone and it wouldn’t look good with casing.

This is not a phone made with photography in mind but the camera does enable you to take photos of reasonable quality and it comes with the beautification mode when you are doing a selfie. The beautification mode doesn’t make you unnaturally beautiful. #win

Weight

Noticeably heavier than my current phone but for its strength (i.e. battery life ) I have no complains.

Android Lolipop

I read up on Android Lollipop and the latest Android Marshmellow for this review and found that I would like Android Marshmallow better for the way apps can be displayed and other features. Its a pity that the Zenfone Max runs on Android Lollipop when Android Marshmallow had already been released in 2016.

Oh boy, the battery life!

I update and consume social media posts on various platforms everyday or every other day. I also take photos and videos with my phone everyday because the phone is a camera tool that activates the quickest. That means my phone battery drains super fast and in reality, I keep it on low power mode all the time. Until I met the Asus ZenFone Max.

I charged the ZenFone Max on 15 April and the left it at home on normal battery mode for using as and when. I didn’t use the Power Saver app at all to really understand how long the battery can last. I’m writing this post on 3 May, guess how much battery life I have left in the morning?

Not that I can rap but when the Zenfone Max was with me, I had no such predicament. #noneedtorush

However, I think the battery drains faster towards the end, because by evening time I only have 3% battery life left.

As mentioned before, the 5000 mAh battery can be used to charged other devices. However, the battery is not replaceable – something to note.

Dual Sim Card & Memory Storage

Travel game strong for my hubby and this is very useful, except that there is only 4G LTE support for one SIM card. 2G/3G connectivity for the other. 16GB built-in memory storage is not sufficient in my opinion but you can expand it with a microSD card for up to 64GB.

Price and availability

$249, available at ASUS brand store, ASUS authorised dealers, Singtel, and StarHub.

Summary

Pros

  1. Impressive battery life
  2. Can be used to charge other devices
  3. Its a Zenfone. Zenfones can perform many tricks.
  4. Affordable

Cons

  1. Battery not replaceable
  2. Personal Peeve: Headphone jack on top.
  3. Speakers can be muted when placed on table
  4. Not on Android Marshmallow

Disclosure: I was provided with an Asus Zenfone Max on loan for the purposes of this review. No other compensation was received.

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