Asus Unveils Zenfone AR with Google 3D Tango Computing Platform and Daydream

Taiwan-based Asus has unveiled Zenfone AR, a new 5.7-inch smartphone with Google 3D Tango computing platform that allows the users to experience indoor mapping, augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR), and much more. The 3D Tango technology enables a device to sense the world around it, thus allowing interaction with virtual objects as well as watching a movie or playing a game in virtual or augmented reality.

Zenfone AR is now the second smartphone—other being Lenovo’s Phab2 phone—offering 3D Tango platform to users. Zenfone AR is is also compatible with Google Daydream – Google’s virtual reality system.

“We are excited to be the first to enable Tango and Daydream,” said Asus chairman Jonney Shih while unveiling the handset at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

Asus Zenfone AR will be available in the markets in second quarter of the year.

“This is really the next wave that is going to get consumers excited about smartphones,” said Asus marketing chief Erik Hermanson.

Google 3D Tango makes use of motion tracking and depth sensing to create onscreen 3D experiences. With 3D Tango, users get a better picture of a physical environment and can use it for functions like home decoration.

The ZenFone AR comes with a 5.7-inch Quad HD display covered with Gorilla Glass 4. It is powered by Snapdragon 821 processor, and is equipped with “Vapor Cooling” technology to keep things running cool. The device features 8 GB of RAM and offers several internal memory options, ranging from 32 GB to 256 GB, and expandable up to 2TB via microSD. ASUS Zenfone AR will run on Android 7.0, and will also have an updated ZenUI 3.0 user interface.

Asus calls its triple lens camera system as TriCam. The main 23-MP camera is claimed to be capable of capturing high quality, extremely sharp images. The second camera is a motion tracking camera, while the third one is depth sensing camera.

Zenfone AR’s 5 magnet speaker system driven by an NXP Smart AMP will provide users with a top-notch sound experience.

This dual-SIM phone comes with a 3300 mAh battery and Quick Charge 3.0 technology. According to ASUS, 60% of the battery will be charged in just 39 minutes. The device also features a USB-C port and fingerprint scanner.

The price of the phone has not yet been revealed.

Asus has also announced to soon release new smartphone, Zenfone 3 Zoom that will be equipped with upgraded camera technology.

Headquartered in Taipei, Taiwan, Asus is a Taiwanese multinational electronics and computer hardware company that specializes in manufacturing laptops, desktops,  netbooks, monitors, motherboards, graphics cards, smartphones,  networking equipment, projectors, and a variety of other electronic devices. Asus was ranked top 4th PC vendor in 2015 by unit sales.

Asus was founded in 1989 by four engineers: Ted Hsu, T.H. Tung, Wayne Hsieh and M.T. Liao. All these individuals had previously worked as hardware engineers at Acer. After founding, the company started creating motherboards for desktops. It launched its first PhysX accelerator card in 2005, and soon entered the LCD TV market. In January 2008, ASUS split into three independent companies: ASUS, Pegatron, and Unihan.

In 2010, Asus unveiled U36 – the world’s thinnest notebook – featuring Intel processor voltage standard Intel core i3 or i5 with a thickness of only 19 mm.