Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 is the successor the popular Asus Zenfone Max Pro M1 which was dubbed one of the best budget segment smartphones of 2018. With a glass backed sleek design and performance backed by the Snapdragon 660, is the Max Pro M2 a great deal? Let's find out.
Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2: Specifications
Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 comes with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 coupled with an Adreno 512 GPU and 3/4/6 GB of RAM depending on the variant you choose. It sports a 6.26-inch (1080 x 2280 pixels) notched LCD display. For optics, it features a 12-megapixel f/1.8 primary sensor along with a 5-megapixel f/2.4 sensor and an LED flash on the back. For selfies, it packs a 13-megapixel f/2.0. All of this is backed by a 5,000mAh.
The device sports a glass back panel with a plastic frame. It runs Google’s Android 9.0 Pie with almost stock Android UI on the top. The phone sports a hybrid dual SIM card configuration, a 3.5mm headphone jack and a micro-USB port for charging & data syncing.
Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 Review: Design
Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 features a glass back with a plastic frame. The look and feel of the smartphone is great in hand. The smartphone sports Gorilla Glass 6 on the back and front which is unheard of in this price segment.
The front has a huge chin on the bottom. The device sports a 6.26-inch, 19:9 aspect ratio notched LCD display. The front camera, earpiece, and the proximity sensor are all placed inside of the notch which is angled for a better look.
On the back, there is a dual camera module paired with an LED flash aligned in a vertical orientation. The phone bears Asus's logo and the fingerprint sensor on the back. The colour matching accent on the camera lens really makes the phone stand out.
On the right edge, there is the power button along with the volume rockers just above it. The left side only holds the sim card tray, which consists of a hybrid dual SIM card slot. On the top edge, there is a secondary microphone for noise cancellation and on the bottom edge, there is the micro-USB port along with a primary microphone, headphone jack, and the speaker grille.
Overall, the design of the smartphone is great. The angled notch and the accents on the rear camera lens make the smartphone stand out. The glass back instead of metal or plastic improves the look as well as the feel in hand.
Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 Review: Software
Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 runs Google’s Android 9.0 Pie operating system with an almost stock Android UI on top. Unfortunately, the smartphone is not under Android One program, so future software updates are not promised as such, but a stock UI is a very appreciated gesture.
Features like a built-in theme engine in the smartphone and the ability to modify various settings that you can't on the stock Android are always a plus, but stock Android means there will be no nuances or unforeseen bugs and crashed in the software. There are battery optimizations tweaks and some minor changes in the software, but they don't affect the look and feel of the software. Overall, the software experience of the Zenfone Max Pro M2 is something we all would like other companies to implement.
Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 Review: Performance
Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 sports a Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 coupled with an Adreno 512 GPU and 3GB/4GB/6GB of RAM. We had the 4GB variant for review purposes, so your performance mileage might differ, depending on the unit you purchase. We ran our usual benchmark tests to evaluate the performance of the phone. AnTuTu failed to run on it as it was consuming a lot of battery and the device's battery management features kicking in. I don't know, how I feel about the software killing of apps based on battery usage.
On GeekBench, it managed to get a single core score of 1438 and a multi-core score of 5130. The performance numbers of the device on paper were average.
While playing light games such as Temple Run and Crossy Chicken, the phone runs smoothly. Games like PUBG Mobile and Asphalt 9 Legend's also work fine with a slight lag after long gaming hours. Considering the price of the smartphone, it performs pretty well.
Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 Review: Display
Asus utilizes a notch design similar to the one seen on Apple's iPhone X but slightly smaller and more angled for a better look. The Zenfone Max Pro M2 sports a 6.26-inch, 19:9 aspect ratio LCD display. The brightness turns up high enough to offer great sunlight visibility and turns down enough to offer comfortable usage experience even in the complete darkness.
Asus ZenAbout WordPressffone Max Pro M2 Review: Cameras
Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 features a 12-megapixel f/1.8 primary sensor along with a 5-megapixel f/2.4 sensor and an LED flash on the back. For selfies, it packs a 13-megapixel f/2.0. Although, not everything depends on a camera’s megapixel count as we have seen in the past.
The rear camera of the device offers images with good details and great colour reproduction. The saturation and contrast are great. The camera boosts, the colour of the images a little bit, but it is not noticeable easily.
Front camera of the Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 is also not so bad. The colours are not natural and are a bit boosted. The beauty mode is annoying, which gets turned on automatically whenever you open the camera. With the beauty mode is turned to its maximum, the colours are so highly boosted that subject looks weird and unnatural.
Overall, apart the camera quality of the smartphone is great.
Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 Review: Battery
The Zenfone Max Pro M2 comes with a 5,000mAh battery, which lasts for a little over 24 hours on a single charge. Charge time with the included charger is around one and a half hours, which is great. Overall, you would like to charge the smartphone during the night, before going to bed, so as to it doesn’t die on you in the middle of the day leaving you stranded.
We ran PCMark’s Work 2.0 Battery Life test, which subjects the phone to heavy usage and finds out how the battery performs in those conditions. The device yielded a result of 12 hours and 50 minutes, which lines up with the battery capacity in the smartphone and our day to day usage.
Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 Review: Conclusion
Overall, the smartphone is good to buy. At the time of writing this review, the Asus Zenfone Max Pro M2 starts at Rs. 9,999 with 3GB RAM, 32GB storage. and costs Rs 11,999 for the 4GB RAM, 64GB storage variant and 13,999 for the 6GB RAM and 64GB variant.
At that price point, the performance not particularly top of the line, but the stock Android and Gorilla Glass 6 makes up for that. The micro-USB port is a disappointment but the 10W charger and the 5,000mAh battery lasts extremely well.
Competitors like Xiaomi and Huawei are offering customers way better performance for the price but cut down on other areas. Overall, the stock android, amazing battery life, and great look and feel with the protection of Gorilla Glass 6 do trump most other smartphones in this range.