Asus ZenFone 2 Laser 5.5-inch ZE550KL Price in the Philippines is Php 8,695 : Initial Review, Complete Specs, Unboxing, Antutu Benchmark Score, In the Flesh Photos

I've been using the Asus ZenFone 2 Laser ZE550KL as one of my daily drivers for a couple of weeks now and so far, I can confidently say that this model is certainly one of the best sub-Php 9,000 smartphones that you can get for yourself or a loved one this year.

Asus ZenFone 2 Laser ZE550KL
Note: There are two ZenFone 2 Laser models that are available in the Philippines. This is the bigger version. There's also the ZE500KL, which only has a 5-inch HD screen.

Before I give you three reasons why I'm in love with the ZE550KL. Let's do a quick unboxing.

As you can see, it's packaging is very similar to that of the best-selling Asus ZenFone 2 ZE551ML and the popular Asus ZenFone Selfie. There's an outer case serving as sleeve for the inner box containing all of the items.

This is the complete retail package that you'll get for Php 8,695.

The headphones have noise-cancelling in-ear silicone buds as well as this metallic accent at the back with concentric pattern reminiscent of the strip at the bottom of the handset's face.

The travel charger with 1.35A output

The Quick User Guide and Warranty Card

Asus ZenFone 2 Laser 5.5-inch ZE550KL
And of course, we have the unit itself.

Asus ZenFone 2 Laser features a 5.5-inch IPS+ display panel that's a joy to behold (even if its resolution is just HD or 1280 x 720 pixels). Having such a large display puts ZE550KL well within the phablet category.

Alright. As I've said, there are three things about this handset that I fell in love with and I'm sure many of you will appreciate.

First, Asus ZenFone 2 Laser looks very attractive.

While it doesn't look as exquisite as the more expensive Asus ZenFone 2 ZE551ML (Supplement: Asus ZenFone 2 Philippines Details), the Laser version nonetheless flaunts some of the Taiwanese company's award-winning Zen Design elements included the back cover with graceful curve that gently tapers at the edges.

The Red variant has slight matte texture that feels great to the touch as well as a subtle iridescent tint, which is a real visual treat.

Just like all ZenFone models this year, ZE550KL's volume rocker at the back and home button on top are made of real metal, helping to make the phone look and feel more elegant.

Asus ZenFone 2 Laser 5.5-inch ZE550KL

Second, this phablet's imaging capabilities are perhaps the best you'll get in this price category. As its very name suggests, it supports Laser Autofocus technology letting you focus on your subject and snap shots faster. Both the 13 MegaPixel main camera and the 5MP selfie cam in front support Asus' PixelMaster technology that delivers bright and brilliant colors along with crisp details on photos taken even in low light conditions. Oh, and the rear cam comes with Dual Tone LED flash that give you more natural-looking skin tone when you use the phone to take photos of people. Stay tuned for sample shots.

Asus ZenFone 2 Laser 5.5-inch ZE550KL

Finally, while Asus ZenFone 2 Laser ZE550KL isn't particularly a beast when it comes to gaming, its 64-Bit Qualcomm Snapdragon 410, 2GB of RAM, and 16GB of ROM combination - along with software optimizations implemented on the svelte Zen UI - are enough to deliver a super-smooth overall touch experience.

Asus ZenFone 2 Laser 5.5-inch ZE550KL
The phone's set of internal hardware gives ZE550KL an Antutu Benchmark Score in the range of 24,000 to 25,000. I got 24,258 when I ran the test on the phablet earlier.

This mark is obviously not as high as what you'll get on other similarly priced smartphones with Snadragon 615 or MediaTek MT6752 processor but trust me when I say that Asus ZenFone 2 Laser will give you a lag-free and no-stutter mobile experience especially when navigating the interface or using social networking applications. I'd say the fluidity of touch response that delivers is almost if not exactly the same as that of ZE551ML. It's really good.

Oh, and another thing. The phone's removable 3,000 mAh battery gives the phablet almost two days of uptime with regular use. The phone's HD display is not as energy-draining as the Full HD screens of ZE551ML and ZenFone Selfie and along with the moderately powerful Snapdragon 410, these specs allow the phone to conserve the battery.

All of the model's strengths and limitations considered, I'm inclined to recommend the Asus ZenFone 2 Laser ZE550KL to all students and yuppies who are looking for a fairly affordable Android smartphone that can give them more value than the amount that will pay for the device. Check out this release, TP Friends! It's now available nationwide and it's out in five colors, namely, Red, Gold, Black, White, and Silver.

TechPinas Smartphone Technical Specs Table (TSTST)
Name Asus ZenFone 2 Laser ZE550KL
Type Slate Form Factor (Full Touchscreen), Phablet
Price Category Midrange
Dimensions152.5 x 77.2 x 10.8 mm
Weight 170 grams
Available Colors Black, White, Red, Silver, Gold
Operating System Android 5.0 Lollipop with Zen UI
Display 5.5 inches (~267 ppi pixel density), HD 720 x 1280 pixels, IPS LED Backlit, capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors, Gorilla Glass 4 with 178⁰ wide view angle
Processor Quad Core 1.2 GHz ARM Cortex-A53, Adreno 306 GPU, Qualcomm MSM8916 Snapdragon 410 chipset
RAM 2GB RAM options
Internal Storage 16 GB ROM, expandable via microSD card slot supporting up to 128GB
Camera Rear: 13 MegaPixels, f/2.0 Aperture, 5-element lens, Laser Auto Focus, Dual Color Flash
Front: 5 MegaPixels, f/2.0 Aperture, wide-angle 85˚Pano Selfie
Video Capture Back: Full HD 1080p 30 frames per second for main camera
Front: HD
Audio and Video Playback MP3, WAV, eAAC+, FLAC, MP4, H.264
Ports microUSB v2.0, 3.5 mm audio jack
ConnectivityWi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n, Wi-Fi Direct, DLNA, Wi-Fi hotspot, Bluetooth v4.0 with A2DP, EDR, 3G HSDPA, 21 Mbps; HSUPA, 5.76 Mbps, HSPA+; LTE Cat4
GPS Yes, with GLONASS and A-GPS
FM Radio Yes
Sensors Accelerator, G-Sensor, E-Compass, Gyroscope, Proximity, Ambient Light Sensor, Hall Sensor
Network 2G GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900 - SIM 1 and SIM 2, 3G HSDPA 850 / 900 / 1900 / 2100, 4G LTE 700 / 800 / 850 / 900 / 1700 / 1800 / 1900 / 2100 / 2600 (Bands 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9, 17, 18, 19, 20, 28, 29), TD-LTE 1900 / 2300 / 2500 / 2600 (Bands 38, 39, 40, 41)
SIM Card Type Dual microSIM
SIM1 Support2G/3G/4G
SIM2 Support2G/3G/4G
Dual SIM Dual Standby
Battery Removable 3,000 mAh Li-Po battery
Uptime TP Test: 2 Days of Regular Use
Value-Added Features Zen UI, PixelMaster camera, Affordable price tag, Laser Autofocus
Announcement Philippines: August 29, 2015, ZenFestival Manila
Availability September 2015
Price Official SRP in the Philippines: Php 8,695