Contrary to the thinking amongst some of its rivals, Asus has no plans to bundle content with its smartphones as Chang thinks everything is already available to users separately. “We don’t want to bundle something that’s already present in abundance and people can consume on their own,” Asus Regional Head Peter Chang told indianexpress.com.
Asus Zenfone 3 Deluxe with the Snapdragon 821 processor will start selling in India within a couple of weeks while the Zenfone 3 Max with a 4,100 mAh battery will take some more time. While Asus Zenfone 3 Max packs a fairly large battery, such devices take an equally long amount of time to charge when they don’t come with fast charge technology. Chang said the idea with the big battery phones was that users won’t need to charge them throughout the day. “You only charge it before going to sleep. However, we understand fast charging technology is important for such devices and we’ll be working on the same.”
Admitting that USB Type-C is fast becoming the norm, Chang said users need time to adapt to this change. While the Zenfone 3 Max doesn’t come with USB Type-C, Asus will gradually introduce the same for all its future smartphones. “A lot of our smartphones such as Zenfone 3 Deluxe come with a USB Type-C. But we opted out of the idea for Zenfone 3 Max as a lot of people still use micro USB and do not want to change immediately. So, we are making the change a gradual one,” he said.
Asked why Asus is continuing to announce devices under its Zenfone 3 series, he said, “The ‘3’ in Zenfone represents our third generation of smartphones. The idea goes back to when we started manufacturing smartphones. Back then we were new and weren’t making a lot of devices and thus we started launching them under a series.” He said the company had a smartphone called Zenfone 4 back when they were manufacturing 2nd generation devices. “So I’m sure what the next line-up of Asus smartphones be called, but we’ll launch the next set in 2017,” Chang added.
Chang insists the 2.5D curved glass design and reverse charging technology sets the Zenfone 3 Max apart from similar offerings in the category. He considers every other smartphone maker as Asus’ competitor. “Almost every smartphone maker is there in the Rs 10,000 to Rs 20,000 price segment, so that becomes a very tough market. And therefore that makes everyone our competitor,” he said.
Asked why they were not thinking of a flagship that packs everything from a big battery to superior camera, Chang said such a product might end up being very bulky. He said it is very important for a flagship to look stylish and this is one of the primary features users look for in such a device. “And frankly it not yet possible to make a smartphone that looks elegant but packs a 5,000 mAh battery as well. Maybe in future but right now, it doesn’t look possible,” Chang explained. He concluded by saying Asus is not looking to foray into the modular smartphone segment for now.