(Pocket-lint) - When it comes to mid-price phones, the Asus Zenfone 5 offers an impressive spec sheet and points of difference that make it the phone to challenge its competition.
From its glass-back and ultra-trim bezel design, to its unusual dual camera setup and Hi-Res audio support, here are five top reasons the Zenfone 5 is a savvy choice.
Dual cameras with ultra-wide angle mode
Dual cameras are an increasingly prominent feature on many phones. But none at this price point can do what the Zenfone 5 can: offer ultra-wide angle shooting.
With the Camera app open a simple tap of the wide-angle icon opens a 120-degree angle of view, which is broader than your peripheral vision. With a default 19:9 aspect ratio, these cinematic-like shots are a great way to look onto wide vistas and landscapes.
But that's not all: the Zenfone 5 has all the other new-fangled tricks that its competitors do too. From 4K ultra-HD video capture to Portrait mode (where the background blurs in a pro style) and optical image stabilisation to add support, there's no stone unturned here.
Distinctive glass design
In a world of black slabs, Asus stands apart from its boring-looking competition with a slick, glass-back phone that'll catch plenty of attention.
Available in Meteor Silver and Midnight Blue finishes, this reflective coating delivers a flagship appearance and appeal. Your mates will assume you spent a whole lot more cash for such a look.
90% screen-to-body ratio
The Zenfone 5 doesn't waste space with a fingerprint scanner on the front (that's on the rear instead). It doesn't muck about with unwanted bezel, either, employing a notch screen design for a whopping 90 per cent screen-to-body ratio.
What that means is simple: this 6.2-inch Full HD+ panel is predominantly screen. It also doesn't look or feel anywhere as big as its headline spec thanks to those ultra-trim bezel edges.
And if you're not a fan of the notch then it can be easily hidden from within the software at the touch of a button.
3.5mm headphone jack
With all the major flagships ditching the 3.5mm headphone jack, Asus bucks the trend by keeping the port pride of place in the Zenfone 5. That means wired headphones are a perfect match, or you can Bluetooth wireless connect if you have the right kit.
Asus goes a step beyond in the audio department, though, offering Hi-Res Audio compatibility and DTS Headphone:X for surround sound-style 3D immersive audio pumped directly into your ears.
ZenUI software perks
Built on top of Google's Android operating system, Asus' latest iteration of ZenUI adds software perks aplenty. You get all the top drawer Android functionality as you'd expect, of course, but with additional fun and function at your fingertips.
There's ZenMotion, which allows gesture controls: whether that's swipe actions on the fingerprint scanner, double-tap actions on the phone's screen, or physical actions such as flipping the phone, the Zenfone 5 will react to your every move.
Elsewhere there's Zenmoji to go beyond selfies and transform yourself into a virtual animal which you can record in real-time and send to friends and family for a bit of fun.
If you're business minded then the dual SIM Zenfone 5 also offers App Twin, which means your important apps - such as WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter and so forth - can be duplicated, offering separate active sign-ins for both your personal and business accounts.