ASUS Announces ZenFone AR
World’s first AR and VR smartphone that is Tango enabled and Daydream-ready
Las Vegas, USA (4th January, 2017) — ASUS today announced ZenFone AR, a next-generation smartphone that represents a significant advance in mobile virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) technologies. It is the first smartphone that will be Tango enabled and Daydream-ready. Tango is a set of sensors and computer-vision software by Google that enables smartphone augmented reality. Tango technologies add three key capabilities — Tango motion tracking, Tango depth perception, and Tango area learning — to enable smartphone augmented reality to create unique AR user experiences, such as AR gaming, AR utilities, and indoor navigation. Daydream is Google's platform for high-quality, mobile virtual reality and supports Daydream VR apps. Paired with the Daydream View headset and controller, ZenFone AR will be able to let users explore new worlds, kick back in their personal VR cinema, and play games that put them at the center of action. ZenFone AR was developed in close cooperation with Google to deliver the best AR and VR experiences.
ZenFone AR is the thinnest and lightest Tango enabled device. This breakthrough in size and weight is made possible by the innovative ASUS TriCam™ system, a three-camera system consisting of a 23MP PixelMaster 3.0 main camera, a motion-tracking camera, and a depth-sensing camera that meet Tango specifications. Unlike three-camera systems in other devices, the design of the ASUS TriCam system clusters its array of cameras to reduce their footprint within the phone, enabling the entire phone to be thinner and lighter.
ZenFone AR features a powerful Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 821 processor that is optimized for Tango, and is the world's first smartphone with 8GB of RAM. ZenFone AR's powerful performance and innovative camera work in conjunction with Tango technology to enable smooth and compelling smartphone AR experiences. A beautiful, 5.7-inch WQHD Super AMOLED display and a new five-magnet speaker makes Daydream’s virtual reality apps, games, and videos more immersive and entertaining. Android™ 7.0 ‘Nougat’ lets users get the most out of ZenFone AR with new multitasking features and other enhancements that deliver a great mobile experience.
ASUS TriCam system for Tango experiences
ZenFone AR uses an ASUS TriCam system consisting of three rear cameras — a motion-tracking camera, depth-sensing camera and high-resolution 23MP PixelMaster 3.0 camera — which provide input to Tango, enabling smartphone augmented reality experiences for users. The motion-tracking camera lets ZenFone AR keep track of its location as it moves through three-dimensional space. The depth-sensing camera lets ZenFone AR determine its distance from objects by projecting an infrared (IR) laser and measuring the amount of time it takes for IR light to bounce off objects and return to the phone. The 23MP PixelMaster 3.0 camera features a Sony IMX318 image sensor to vividly capture the environment as a backdrop for AR experiences.
AR is a rapidly growing area of mobile technology, and one that consumers are extremely excited about. ASUS and Google have partnered with well-known brands, such as Gap, to bring the smartphone AR experience to customers. Tango also provides developers with the ability to deliver consistent AR experiences across devices and helps users easily discover a wide range of new apps, such as exciting games, home decor utilities, and apps that provide new ways to explore. To date, the ecosystem has grown quickly and there are plenty of apps on Google Play that are Tango enabled.
Daydream by Google
The expansive 5.7-inch display of ZenFone AR makes it ideal for VR apps and games when used with Daydream View, immersing users in incredible VR worlds that appear detailed and lifelike in WQHD (1440 x 2560) resolution. Super AMOLED technology enables deep blacks and high contrast, further enhancing image quality and 3D effects.
With ZenFone AR and Daydream View, users can explore new and fictional worlds with apps like Street View and Fantastic Beasts, kick back in a personal VR cinema with YouTube, Netflix, Hulu and HBO, and get in the game with Gunjack 2, LEGO® BrickHeadz, Need for Speed, and more.
Impressive audio, inside and out
In addition to video, high-quality audio is an important component of immersive AR and VR experiences. To fulfill this demand, ZenFone AR comes with ASUS SonicMaster 3.0 technology. A five-magnet speaker driven by a powerful NXP smart amplifier delivers clear, expansive sound that can be played at high volumes without distortion. ZenFone AR can also output certified High-Resolution Audio (HRA) to compatible devices at 24-bit/192kHz — or 4X CD-quality. DTS Headphone:X™ provides virtual 7.1-channel surround sound for immersive entertainment experiences.
Cutting-edge hardware for unrivaled AR and VR performance
ZenFone AR is designed with the latest, top-of-the-line components to provide high-quality AR and VR experiences. This cutting-edge hardware also makes ZenFone AR one of the most powerful smartphones available.
ZenFone AR features a Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 processor that has been specially optimized for AR operations. ASUS worked closely with Qualcomm Technologies and Google engineers to help develop methods for efficiently distributing computer-vision workloads, as well as rapidly processing movement and positioning instructions with Tango to deliver smooth, immersive, and compelling AR experiences. It also features the desktop-class Qualcomm Adreno 530 graphics-processing unit (GPU) to deliver supercharged graphics performance and handle the graphical demands of Tango and Daydream applications with ease. ZenFone AR has a sophisticated vapor-cooling system that allows the CPU and GPU to work more efficiently and delivers enhanced performance to prevent overheating.
World’s first smartphone with 8GB of RAM
ZenFone AR is the world's first smartphone with 8GB of RAM, enabling it to handle the demands of AR and VR with ease. It also helps with heavy multitasking, allowing users to keep dozens of apps open simultaneous and instantly switch among them. ZenFone AR also includes 256GB of fast UFS 2.0 storage, enabling users to store a large library of apps, games, videos, photos, and music, and open them quickly.
Thin and light metallic design
ZenFone AR packages its advanced technology in a beautifully minimalist, light, and compact design. A precision-milled metal frame and slim, 4.8mm edge provides a luxurious look that is further enhanced by stainless-steel accents around the camera. These accents also help protect the camera lens from scratches. ZenFone AR has an ergonomic curved shape with a 4.8mm edge and a tactile, leather-patterned rear surface that feels great in the hand.
ASUS PixelMaster 3.0 — Capture reality, fast and steady
ZenFone AR also features an advanced camera that takes beautiful, high-resolution photos and videos in almost any lighting condition. It has an ASUS PixelMaster 3.0 camera that uses the world's highest resolution camera sensor (Sony IMX318) and the ASUS TriTech autofocus system. Other key camera features include:
- Four-axis optical image stabilization (OIS) photo and three-axis electronic image stabilization (EIS) video stabilization — Enables sharp photos and shake-free videos.
- 0.03-second ASUS TriTech™ System — Exclusive TriTech autofocus technology is the ultimate integration of phase-detection autofocus, laser autofocus and subject-tracking autofocus, the result is a perfectly focused and sharp image every time – day or night, indoor or out.
- Super Resolution mode — Creates ultra-high resolution, 92MP photos by capturing and combining four native 23MP photos to create a single image with exceptional clarity, greater detail, and less noise.
- RAW file support — ZenFone AR offers photographers the freedom to shoot and store compositions in RAW format. RAW files save the full data of the photo captured by the camera’s sensor and are ideal for enhancement with editing software, where users are able to uncover fine details in areas of shadow, or recover overexposed areas in the highlights, with much lower loss of image quality when compared to editing JPEG image files.
- High-resolution 4K UHD video recording — Captures ultra-detailed and sharp videos.
- Professional manual creative controls — Gives keen photographers control over advanced camera settings, like white balance, exposure value (EV), ISO sensitivity, shutter speed, and focus. This makes ZenFone AR a powerful tool for learning the fundamental skills of photography and allows users to shoot scenes with many different creative interpretations.