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The Asus ZenFone 8 is Android's latest mini flagship smartphone

The new ZenFone 8. (Source: YouTube)
The new ZenFone 8. (Source: YouTube)
Numerous leaks have painted Asus' 2021 camera-centric flagship phone as the first "Mini" variant of its kind, and the Taiwanese OEM has not let these expectations down on its launch. The new device does indeed have an unusually small 5.9-inch 20:9 display. Then again, there is also the ZenFone 8 Flip, a third-gen motor-cam phone.

Asus debuted the ZenFone 8 series today, the vanilla model of which has an unusually small screen for 2021's purposes. It measures 5.9 inches diagonally - however, it is still a top-end Samsung E4 AMOLED panel, which means it will have a higher pixel density compared to the average up-to-date FHD flagship.

Its maker has potentially good news for audio enthusiasts as well: it has equipped the 8 with "linear" speakers with dual mono amps from Cirrus Logic and support for Dirac HD Sound. Not only that, a headphone jack is in evidence, which also means that FM radio might work in some markets.

The 8 also departs from the 2021 norm in that it features dual rear cameras. However, as its 64MP main shooter also handles wide-angle functions, and as its secondary lens is ultra-wide, Asus might feel all the essential bases are covered in this iteration of its traditionally photography-focused series.

The ZenFone 8's compact nature has a possible drawback waiting to happen, however, and that is battery life. Asus has been able to fit a 4000mAh battery in it, which can fill up at 30 watts (W), as opposed to the supercharged rates of other, larger high-end mobile devices. 

Then agin, it also features Gorilla Glass Victus on the front panel and an IP68 rating for durability. The hopefully sturdy little phone will start at €599 (~US$723) for a 6GB RAM base model, although there are also 8GB through 12GB options.

Asus has tempered its Mini-trend gamble with the ZenFone 8 Flip. It is a complete refresh of 2020's 7 Pro, with all the same specs (flip-cam sensors included) except for an updated processor: the Snapdragon 888, same as the 8. This means its 6.67-inch FHD AMOLED display is still 90Hz (even though its smaller sibling has a 120Hz rate), driven by a 5,000mAh battery. It also runs ZenUI 8 based on Android 11, as does the 8.

Asus has announced that it starts at €799 (~$965) for an 8GB RAM SKU. Both the ZenFone 8 and 8 Flip come in silver or black, and can be ordered from the OEM's website in Taiwan and Europe at present.

Buy a ZenFone 7 Pro for about the same price as a new 8 on Amazon

The Asus ZenFone 8 and 8 Flip. (Source: Asus)
The Asus ZenFone 8 and 8 Flip. (Source: Asus)


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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2021 05 > The Asus ZenFone 8 is Android's latest mini flagship smartphone
Deirdre O'Donnell, 2021-05-13 (Update: 2021-05-13)