Asus Zenfone 8, the Taiwanese tech company’s latest flagship smartphone just made its global appearance on May 12. The new Asus Zenfone bags a bunch of power-packed features including the premium Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 mobile platform, 120Hz display, and OIS-enabled optics with HyperSteady feature. While the phone promises top-notch performance (at least on paper), Asus boasts the new Zenfone 8’s compact design to offer ‘perfect pocketability.’ The new Asus Zenfone 8 flagship phone has been launched for a price starting at €599 (roughly Rs 53,257). Considering its price and specs, the new Zenfone 8 series has stiff competition in the market from leading rivals like Apple, OnePlus, Xiaomi and Samsung. In this article, we make a comparison of the Asus Zenfone 8 with the premium phones- OnePlus 9 Pro, Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra, Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra, and Apple iPhone 12 based on the preliminary specs and price. Also Read - Xiaomi Mi 10 Ultra sale in India delayed: Release date remains a mystery
Asus Zenfone 8 vs OnePlus 9 Pro vs Samsung Galaxy S21 vs Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra vs Apple iPhone 12: Specs comparison
Unlike the other flagship phones, the new Asus Zenfone 8 comes with a compact design thereby offering better single-handed usage. The rear panel uses Corning Gorilla Glass 3 with a frosted finish. The phone’s frame is built out of aluminum and there are slight curves on the long edge. The phone offers a dual-camera array at the back with Asus Zenfone branding inscribed at the centre. The power button is coated in blue and acts as a smart key that can be configured to trigger three different actions. It comes with IP68 rated water and dust resistance. An interesting aspect of the phone is that it comes with a headphone jack which many leading brands have ditched lately. At the base sits all the necessary ports and SIM tray. The new Asus Zenfone 8 weighs 169 grams and measures 148 x 68.5 x 8.9 mm. Also Read - Top phones launched in May 2021: Redmi Note 10S, Poco M3 Pro and more
Talking about the OnePlus 9 Pro, the phone features a tall form factor in comparison to the Asus Zenfone 8 smartphone. The phone is built out of glass with an aluminum frame sandwiched in between. It features a 3D Gorilla Glass back with tapered edges. The flagship phone from the OnePlus flaunts the signature alert slider key. It comes with conventional camera placement in a rectangular module. It is narrower and manageable to use. The two-slot speaker grille, SIM tray, and USB-C port rest at the bottom while the top part is left undisturbed. The phone has a dimension of 163.2 x 73.6 x 8.7 mm and weighs 197 grams.
As for the Samsung Galaxy S21, the phone features a plastic back instead of a glass or frosted finish. The perimeter is surrounded by an aluminum frame. Unlike the Zenfone 8 or the OnePlus 9 Pro, the flagship phone from Samsung features a squared-off design. The unique aspect of the Galaxy S21 is the Contour-Cut camera layout and dual-shade coating. At the base, there is the USB-C port, SIM tray, and speaker grille. The volume keys and power button are placed on the right side of the frame. The phone measures 151.7 x 71.2 x 7.9 mm and weighs 169 grams.
The newly launched Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra falls under a similar price range. The new flagship phone from Xiaomi is built out of ceramic. The arresting feature of the Mi 11 Ultra is its colossal bump at the back that houses the triple camera setup and the secondary 1.1-inch display. The frame is made of aluminum with volume keys and a power button chiseled on the right edge. The sides are thin, and the phone has bulges in the corner. The top part houses the second speaker that comes with the Harman Kardon logo. The phone has an IP68 rating for water and dust resistance. It has a dimension of 164.3 x 74.6 x 8.4 mm. Compared to the other devices in this list, the Mi 11 Ultra is slightly hefty and weighs 234 grams.
Moving on, the Apple iPhone 12 features a compact design with a dual-glass sandwich and metal frame. The phone has slightly thick sides compared to the other models listed above, however, the iPhone 12 uses a Ceramic Shield that is claimed to be four times resilient to damages. The back cover flaunts a glossy finish while the frame has a matte glaze. The phone sports a square-shaped camera module at the back with lenses surrounded by metal rings and protected by sapphire glass. The left side of the frame has the silencer, the volume keys, nano-SIM slot, while on the right there’s the Power/Side key. At the base sits the charging port. The iPhone 12 comes with IP68 rated water and dust resistance. It is worth mentioning that all the devices except for Asus Zenfone 8 come with wireless charging support.
As for the display, the Asus Zenfone 8 features a 5.9-inch AMOLED display (Samsung E4) with 1080p resolution and a 20:9 aspect ratio. The panel has a 120Hz refresh rate, a 240Hz touch sampling rate, and a peak brightness of 1,100 nits. There’s an optical fingerprint reader built into the display. The panel has Corning Gorilla Glass Victus layered on top for added protection.
Meanwhile, the OnePlus 9 Pro sports a tall 6.7-inch Fluid AMOLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate and 1300nits peak brightness. It has an aspect ratio of 20:9 and Corning Gorilla Glass 5 protection. The panel has an optical fingerprint reader for biometrics.
As for the Samsung Galaxy S21, it comes with a 6.2-inch Dynamic AMOLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate and HDR10+ compatibility. The fingerprint reader lies under the AMOLED panel, and it is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass Victus.
The Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra flaunts a bezel-less curved display with a small cutout at the top left corner. It features a 6.81-inch AMOLED screen with a 120Hz refresh rate, HDR10+ support, and 1700nits peak brightness. The display has an aspect ratio of 20:9 and Corning Gorilla Glass Victus protection. There is a 1.1-inch AMOLED selfie display as well on the rear side.
As for Apple’s premium iPhone 12, it features a 6.1-inch Super Retina XDR OLED panel with HDR10 support. The panel offers a wide-colour gamut and has scratch-resistant ceramic glass, oleophobic coating.
While most brands these days prefer implementing as many lenses as possible on their premium models, Asus rather decided to keep it simple and follow Apple’s footsteps. The new Asus Zenfone 8 offers a dual-camera setup housing a 64-megapixel primary Quad-Bayer sensor with OIS and 8K video recording capability. The primary camera is assisted by a 12-megapixel sensor that comes with dual Pixel autofocus. For selfies, the tiny punch-hole cutout up front accommodates a 12-megapixel shooter that comes with dual Pixel AF.
The OnePlus 9 Pro boasts a Hasselblad-branded quad-camera array. The camera configuration comprises a 48-megapixel primary sensor with f/1.8 aperture, omnidirectional PDAF, OIS, an 8- megapixel telephoto lens with 3.3x optical zoom, a 50- megapixel ultrawide lens, and a 2- megapixel monochrome lens. For selfies and video calls, the phone offers a 16- megapixel camera with gyro-EIS support.
The Samsung Galaxy S21 features a triple camera setup housing a 12-megapixel wide lens with Dual Pixel PDAF, OIS, a 64-megapixel telephoto lens with OIS, 1.1x optical zoom, 3x hybrid zoom, and a 12-megapixel ultrawide lens with 120-degree FoV. For selfies, there is a 10-megapixel camera with Dual Pixel AF.
The Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra sports a triple camera arrangement carrying a 50-megapixel wide lens with Dual Pixel PDAF, OIS, 48-megapixel periscope telephoto lens with OIS, 5x optical zoom, a 48-megapixel ultra-wide lens with 128-degree FoV. Upfront, the cutout houses a 20-megapixel sensor that comes with gyro-EIS and 1080p video recording capability.
As for the Apple iPhone 12, it comes with a 12-megapixel dual camera setup with one being a wide lens and the other an ultra-wide lens. The cameras are capable of recording 4K footage at up to 60fps. A dual 12-megapixel sensor rests up front and comes with gyro-EIS.
On the software front, the new Asus Zenfone 8 runs ZenUI 8 based Android 11 OS. The OnePlus 9 Pro comes with the custom OxygenOS 11 based Android 11 OS. Meanwhile, the Samsung Galaxy S21 runs the in-house OneUI 3.1 based Android 11 OS. The Mi 11 Ultra features the latest MIUI 12.5 based Android 11 operating system. As for the iPhone 12, it was launched with iOS 14 OS which is upgradable to 14.5.1.
In terms of hardware, the Asus Zenfone 8, OnePlus 9 Pro, and Mi 11 Ultra are equipped with Qualcomm’s powerful Snapdragon 888 processor. The Zenfone 8 offers up to 16GB of RAM and 256GB UFS 3.1 internal storage. The OnePlus 9 Pro and Mi 11 Ultra offer up to 12GB of RAM paired with 256GB storage (former) and 512GB (latter) onboard storage.
The Samsung Galaxy S21 ships with two mobile platforms depending on the region. The international market gets the proprietary Exynos 2100 chipset equipped Galaxy S21, while the China and USA market gets the Snapdragon 888-backed Galaxy flagship phone. It comes with up to 8GB RAM and 256GB native storage. As for the Apple iPhone 12, it comes with the powerful A14 Bionic chip which is paired with 4GB RAM and up to 256GB storage.
As far as the backup is concerned, the Asus Zenfone 8 is backed by a decent 4,000mAh battery and it comes with 30W fast charging support. The OnePlus 9 Pro ships with a 4,500mAh battery and comes with 65W fast charging support (wired), 50W fast wireless charging support. The Galaxy S21 packs a 4,000mAh battery and supports 25W fast charge technology. As for the Mi 11 Ultra, it gets a 5,000mAh battery and supports 67W fast (wired and wireless) charge tech and 10W reverse wireless charging. The iPhone 12 comes with the smallest battery capacity at 2815 mAh with 20W fast charge support and 15W Qi Magnetic fast wireless charging support.
Asus Zenfone 8 vs OnePlus 9 Pro vs Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra vs Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra vs Apple iPhone 12: Price comparison
In terms of pricing, the all-new Asus Zenfone 8 has been set at €599 (roughly Rs 53,257) for the base model. Whether the company brings the handset at a similar price remains to be seen. The phone has been launched in two colour options- Obsidian Black, Horizon Silver. As for the OnePlus flagship, the OnePlus 9 Pro is available in India at a starting price of Rs 64,999. The Galaxy S21 costs Rs 69,999 for the standard model, while the Mi 11 Ultra price is set at Rs 69,999 for the 12GB RAM model. As for the iPhone 12, the phone is currently retailing at Rs 77,900 on Flipkart.