My short story of a somewhat satisfied owner of a Asus Zenfone 6 ($299 only) came to an end a couple of days ago. The next day I recontracted with Singtel for a Galaxy Note 4.
What's my problem with the Zenfone?
I dropped it on Monday morning with its protective case with no scratches or any damage. Thinking nothing was broken I carried on as usual until a few hours later I discovered I couldn't use the power button to perform screen capture. Then I discovered I couldn't turn off the phone either. Also the volume rocker no longer worked. Was it the drop or just coincidence I cannot be absolutely sure. I took it to the Asus service centre along Orchard Road, waited my turn and the service adviser told me on average repairs take about 5 days. I wasn't too happy to hear that but what choice have I got?
Asus grossly over delivered when they called me the next day to pick up the repaired Zenfone. When I turned up late in the day, the service adviser explained to me that they had to replace the LCD as the volume rocker and power button are part of the same unit. I asked her why the rocker and button had failed but they were as clueless as me.
When I got back to the car, I messaged my brother that Asus had probably designed their Zenfone poorly. My guess is that the vibration from the LCD hitting the ground could reverberate to the rocker and power buttons damaging them. If my guess is correct they will eventually get many returned phones with the same problem.
The Zenfone 6 has other problems that I have reluctantly lived with over the last few months.
1. Their software running the mobile radio doesn't seem to work reliably. Often I only became aware of messages when I stepped into the house and the phone switched to automatically to WiFi.
2. Uploading to Dropbox is also unreliable. I often transfer stuff to Dropbox only to catch it uploading the connection flipped over to WiFi.
3. Eventually I discover that I could force the upload if I switch to Dropbox as the active app. Similarly email messages started to come in and messages began to appear with switch to those apps.
So now I have given up my vintage Classic plan and gone over to 4G. The Zenfone is now a back up phone I pray I wouldn't need at least 2016.