Asus Zenfone 9 should be a hit thanks to its compact form factor, but the listed price might be too high for many interested buyers.
The Asus Zenfone 9 is perhaps one of the smallest Android flagship smartphones to be announced in 2022, but its price is unlikely to be that small. The upcoming Zenfone 9 will be announced on July 28 as Asus’ second flagship for 2022. Earlier in July, it launched the ROG Phone 6 series, the latest entry in its line of gaming smartphones.
The Zenfone 9 will appeal to those who want a smaller phone and ignore the elaborate design of the ROG gaming line. Also, unlike the ROG Phone 6, there won’t be a Pro model. That’s a bit of a surprise given that Asus launched two Zenfone 8 models last year, although the second one is sold as the Zenfone 8 Flip and has a motorized triple rear camera setup that flips to serve as a front camera.
A first listing by a Norwegian online retailer (via GSM Arena) highlights key details of the phone, including its price, revealing that the compact flagship will cost a pretty penny. The Zenfone 9 would start at NOK 8,000 for the base model with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. That works out to around $808/€798, a few dollars more than the Galaxy S22 with the same configuration. A second configuration with 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage will cost NOK8799 (~$888/€878) while the more expensive model will retail for NOK9499 (~$959/€948) and will have 16GB of RAM and 256 GB of storage.
Zenfone 9 costs more than its predecessor
The Zenfone 9 will offer a 5.9-inch FHD+ AMOLED display with 120Hz refresh rate and Gorilla Glass Victus protection. It will also have a Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 processor under its hood. The listing confirms a 50MP sensor paired with a 12MP ultra-wide-angle camera, support for 8K video recording, optical image stabilization at the 6-axis gimbal, and electronic image stabilization. Asus will ship the phone with a 12-megapixel front camera with Face Unlock support.
Additionally, the phone will have a side-mounted fingerprint scanner that doubles as a trackpad, audio jack, stereo speakers, Bluetooth 5.2, NFC, Wi-Fi 6E and dual SIM (nano). As previously reported, the Zenfone 9 will have a 4,300mAh battery with support for 30W fast charging, and the listing revealed that Asus will ship it with an AC adapter. It also confirms that the IP68 phone will run Android 12 and is ready to receive guaranteed OS updates until at least August 2024. This checks with a previous report that said the phone would be supported for two years. The Zenfone 9 will be available in Midnight Black, Moonlight White, Starry Blue and Sunset Red.
The Zenfone 9 costs significantly more than its predecessor, the Zenfone 8, which launched for €670 in Europe and $629 in the US for the base model with 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. Asus even offered an early bird price of $599 in the US and €600 in Europe. While Asus will justify the price increase with the improved chip, battery and main rear camera, it remains to be seen if that will be enough to convince people to buy it over other phones. The Zenfone 9 will face some serious competition in the form of the Galaxy S22 which packs a slightly bigger screen, smaller battery and slower processor, but offers superior display tech, better cameras and software support. longer for the same starting price of $800. Another strong contender in the compact smartphone space is the Xiaomi 12, albeit with a bigger screen and a slightly weaker chipset. It’s not only cheaper at $749, but it packs a bigger battery, charges much faster, and also has better software support than the Zenfone 9.
NEXT: Galaxy S22 Vs Xiaomi 12: Small-Screen Flagship Battle
Source: Elkjop, GSM Arena
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