As we discovered back in June, ASUS has delivered an impressive smartphone with its ZenFone 2. It looks good, boasts a bunch of premium features (1080p display, dual-SIM, 4GB of RAM), and best of all, is priced right. That led us to call the phone an "Excellent Android Value".
With the launch phone being so affordable, ASUS has had a lot of room to work with in beefing it up for special editions. Soon, the company will be releasing the "Laser" variant, which reduces the screen resolution to 720p but boosts the max storage option to 128GB and replaces the Intel Atom SoC with Qualcomm's Snapdragon 410. That model comes in at 5-inches, not 5.5-inches like the original ZenFone 2, so there are some definitive trade offs to consider.
While the ZenFone 2 Laser should appear in US stores, there's yet another model coming out that's not going to. And it's too bad, because it looks awesome. It's called the ZenFone 2 Deluxe, sports a cool polygonal shell, as well as a seemingly overclocked Intel Atom Z3850, spec'd at 2.5GHz (the original ZenFone 2 had a Turbo speed of 2.33GHz).
Oh - and it also packs in 256GB of storage. If that doesn't sound that impressive, just consider the fact that we're talking about a quarter of a terabyte here. That's enough room for over ~100 720p movies (2GB each) or over ~1,700 music albums encoded at a moderate bitrate (150MB each). At up to 2MB per image, it's also enough to let you snap 128,000 or so photos (something tells me the camera would give out long before the storage is filled.)
If 256GB on tap suddenly makes you a data glutton, you could plug in a 128GB microSD card to expand the storage to 384GB. 384GB in a phone. That's impressive.
Alas, if you want the ZenFone 2 Deluxe, you'll have to find a way to source it from Brazil. We can only hope that if there is enough demand in other countries, ASUS might be tempted to expand its availability.