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Asus Zenphone UK release date confirmed as 1st September

Asus Zenfone 5

Asus's new ZenFone smartphone range powered by Intel Atom processors will be coming to the UK in two weeks time

Asus has finally given a UK release date for its Zenphone range of smartphones. The Zenphone 4, 5 and 6 will all be available from the 1st September 2014 onwards, with pre-orders starting from today.

The company unveiled the details last night at its UK product launch event. All three phones will be powered by Intel Atom processors and will have 4in, 5in and 6in screen sizes respectively. Even better, the 4in Zenphone 4 will cost just £99 SIM free, the 5in Zenphone 5 will cost £149 SIM free and the phablet-sized 6in Zenphone 6 will cost £249 SIM free. None of them will have 4G, but at these prices, they all pose a significant threat to our current top budget phones, the Motorola Moto E and Moto G and HTC Desire 816.

ZenFone 4

First up is the ZenFone 4. This is the model for those who prefer compact smartphones, as it has a 4-inch screen; the same size as an iPhone 5S and far smaller than the 5-inch screens that are becoming the Android smartphone standard. Its screen resolution is at the bottom end of what we expect to see on a modern smartphone, with a modest 800×480 pixels.

Asus Zenfone 4There’s no 4G here, so the ZenFone range will be strictly for smaller budgets

This is the cheapest of the ZenPhones, and has the slowest processor; a dual-core 1.2GHz Intel Atom Z2520. However, we think this will be quick enough to run Android 4.3 smoothly, as previous Intel smartphones we’ve seen have proved very rapid indeed. The ZenFone 4 also has a 5-megapixel rear camera and a 0.3-megapixel front-facing model, and weighs just 115g.

Asus Zenfone 1The ZenFone 4’s plain plastic rear is reminiscent of the Moto G

ZenFone 5

The ZenFone 5 ups the game with a 5in IPS panel, with a reasonable 1,280×720 resolution – the lack of Full HD puts this handset, too, firmly in the budget category, but as we’ve seen with phones such as the Samsung Galaxy S3, 720p resolutions still work on large screens.

Asus Zenfone 5

The ZenFone 5 should be quick, thanks to a 2GHz Intel Z2580 processor – again, one of Intel’s “Clovertrail+” chips. It also has an 8-megapixel camera sensor, which is a backside-illuminated model so should produce decent low-light shots, and the obligatory 2-megapixel front-facing selfie-cam.

ZenFone 6

Every phone range needs a phablet, which is where the ZenFone 6 comes in. Its 6-inch screen is slightly smaller than that of rival phone/tablet hybrids such as the Samsung Galaxy Mega, but this is still plenty large enough for easy web browsing and watching films. Like the Mega, the phone has a 1,280×720-pixel resolution, so you won’t have the super-fine images and text you’d see on a Full HD screen.

Like the ZenFone 5, the 6 also has an Atom Z2580 processor running at 2GHz, which should provide plenty of performance. A 13-megapixel camera completes the specs rundown.

ZenFoneThe ZenFones will all be available in a variety of colours

ZenFone KitKat

All three phones may currently run Android 4.3 Jelly Bean, but Asus has promised an update to Android 4.4 KitKat – but no time frame has been given. All three ZenFones also have expandable storage via microSD cards slots and run Asus’ Zen UI.

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