Opinion | Axon 11 5G: ZTE's March 23-bound smartphone could well be a flagship in disguise as a mid-ranger
Launching via livestream on March 23 at 14:00 CST, the Axon 11 5G is an oddity. Teased by ZTE on Weibo over the last few days, the Axon 11 will be a 5G smartphone first and foremost. However, it will also feature quad rear-facing cameras arranged in a squircle camera array.
Shown to come in black and pink colourways, do not be surprised if ZTE sells other colour variants too. The device has been pictured with a small waterdrop notch too, along with what appears to be a high screen-to-body ratio. It is difficult to tell at this stage whether ZTE has opted for a curved or flat display, though.
While initial promotional imagery makes the Axon 11 5G look decidedly like a midrange smartphone, ZTE has muddied the waters somewhat. On the one hand, it would make sense for ZTE to dovetail the release of the Axon 10s Pro with a mid-range smartphone. If a recent Geekbench listing for a ZTE A2021 turns out to be the Axon 11 5G, then a Snapdragon 765G will be onboard.
On the other hand, ZTE consistently refers to the Axon 11 5G as a flagship smartphone, an odd marketing strategy if it actually contains mid-range hardware. Naming the device the Axon 11 would seem to suggest that succeeds the Axon 10 series, too. Perhaps the Axon 11 5G will be an "affordable" flagship instead, with ZTE still including a premium Snapdragon chipset as OnePlus does with its entry-level smartphones. If it is the latter, then expect the Axon 11 5G to include a Snapdragon 865 SoC and at least 6 GB of RAM.