The Zenfone 9 was leaked quite extensively, but ASUS has finally made it official. With the global market for compact smartphones being extremely soft, ASUS is making a really ballsy move by releasing another compact smartphone, after the ill-received Zenfone 8. The ASUS Zenfone 9 comes with a similar 5.9″ 120Hz AMOLED display, retaining the overall compactness of the device, but also gets major improvements across the board.

Significantly improved cameras

ASUS Zenfone 9 camera

ASUS is targeting the Zenfone 9 as a more camera-centric device, albeit with fewer cameras than many other flagships in the market, and even the ROG Phone 6 has one more camera than the Zenfone 9. Perhaps the focus is on quality, instead of quantity? In any case, we have a primary 50MP Sony IMX766 camera with 6-axis hybrid gimbal stabilizer, and a 12MP IMX363 ultrawide shooter. Selfies will be handled by yet another 12MP camera, featuring the Sony IMX663 sensor.

The gimbal OIS is designed to compensate for up to 3° shifts, which when coupled with the new EIS algorithms, allow for smoother videos and sharper shots even when you are moving fast. And yes, the Zenfone 9 can shoot 8K videos. ASUS is also currently trialing a Light Trail Mode along with the regular set of features like Night, Pro, Panorama, Slow Motion and Timelapse mode to expand the repertoire of features to help you get the best shot in every situation.

Smaller but more powerful

ASUS Zenfone 9 vs zenfone 8

As compared to the Zenfone 8, the Zenfone 9 is actually 2% smaller. However we have a much more powerful chipset in the form of the Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1, along with an improved vapor chamber cooling system. The battery has also been bumped up by 7.5%, going from 4000mAh to 4300mAh. Sure, you can say that it is still tiny, but given the size of the screen, it might have a good fighting chance.

However the main draw of the Zenfone 9 versus the other flagships will definitely be its compact dimensions. Measuring just 146.5 x 68.1 x 9.1 mm and coming in at 169g light, the Zenfone 9 is definitely going to make anyone looking for a compact flagship, drool all over it. But it will not be affected by all that drool, because it is IP68-rated. Further improving its handling will be a grippy textured plastic back and flat aluminum sides.

ASUS Zenfone 9 IP68

On top of that, ASUS baked gesture controls into the ZenTouch multi-function power button. The power button houses a fingerprint scanner aside from supporting various gestures like swipes and clicks to bring up various functions. The overall UI of ASUS ZenUI 9 is also optimized for single-handed use with well-designed interfaces and gestures.

ASUS Connex to help you connect with more accessories

ASUS Zenfone 9 Connex backpack case

Last but not least, the Zenfone 9 features ASUS’ attempt at bringing an accessory ecosystem. The Zenfone 9 is the first phone to feature the new Connex modular case system. It is centered around the Connex Case, with the initial set of accessories comprising of the Connex Smart Stand, Connex Card Holder and a Smart Backpack Mount. Given the ROG Phone series’ disappointing track record when it comes to accessories and cross-compatibility across generations, I have my reservations about Connex, but I sure look forward to be proven wrong.

ASUS Zenfone 9 design

The ASUS Zenfone 9 is slated to be available from 28th July in four colors: Moonlight White, Sunset Red, Starry Blue and Midnight Black. Local pricing and availability in Malaysia is still unknown at the time of writing.

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  1. […] options, while leaving those with smaller hands with none. Or perhaps Apple wants you to get the Zenfone 9? […]

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