The Asus Zenfone 9 and iPhone 13 mini are both flagship compact smartphones with top-of-the-line specifications, but which one is the better buy?
The Zenfone 9 and the iPhone 13 mini are both compact flagship smartphones with premium features, but how do they compare with one another? Released as a successor to the Zenfone 8 that came out last year, the Zenfone 9 has everything it takes to be one of the best compact Android flagships on the market.
Thanks to an identical price and similar form factor, the Zenfone 9 competes with the iPhone 13 mini. Apple released the iPhone 13 mini as part of the iPhone 13 lineup last year. The smartphone has all the features of the iPhone 13 but in a smaller package. It is an excellent deal for those who want the features of a flagship iPhone model in a compact size.
When it comes to design, the Zenfone 9 and the iPhone 13 mini are very different. The Zenfone 9 has curved sides, a polymer back, and a punch hole front camera. On the other hand, the iPhone 13 mini follows the standard iPhone design with flat edges, a glass back, and a wide notch in the front. While the Zenfone 9 comes with a 5.9-inch Super AMOLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate and a pixel density of 445 PPI, the iPhone 13 mini has a smaller 5.4-inch Super Retina XDR OLED display with True Tone technology and a sharper resolution of 476 PPI. Unfortunately, the iPhone 13 mini sticks to a standard 60Hz refresh rate. As far as water resistance is concerned, both the Zenfone 9 and iPhone 13 mini have an IP68 rating.
Asus Zenfone 9 Vs. iPhone 13 mini: Processor, Cameras, And Battery
In terms of performance, Asus Zenfone 9 is powered by (currently) the fastest chipset for Android smartphones, the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 SoC. The iPhone 13 mini is powered by the A15 Bionic, the same chipset that powers the iPhone 13 Pro models. Both chipsets are pretty much on par, although the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1 does have a slight advantage when it comes to gaming. The Zenfone 9 comes in three models – 8GB+128GB, 8GB+256GB and 16GB+256GB. The iPhone 13 mini on the other hand comes in 128GB, 256GB, and 512GB storage variants, each paired with 4GB of RAM. Neither of the phones has a microSD card slot.
The Zenfone 9 also has an advantage in the battery department with its 4,300mAh cell that comes with a 30W fast charger in the box. The iPhone 13 mini has a much smaller 2,406mAh battery that supports 15W charging and doesn’t include a charger. Out of the box, the Zenfone 9 runs on Android 12, while the iPhone 13 mini comes with iOS 15. Unfortunately, Asus has promised only two years of software updates, while iPhones tend to get between five to seven years of software updates.
As for the cameras, the Asus Zenfone 9 features a dual-camera setup, including a 50MP Sony IMX766 sensor and a 12MP Sony IMX363 sensor for ultra-wide/macro shots. The Nothing Phone (1) also features the same primary sensor. The iPhone 13 mini also has a dual camera setup – a 12MP primary sensor and a 12MP secondary sensor for ultra-wide shots. While the front camera on the Zenfone is a 12MP Sony IMX663 sensor, the iPhone also has a 12MP front camera. The primary camera on Zenfone 9 features 6-axis hybrid gimbal stabilization, while the primary camera on the iPhone 13 mini has sensor-shift optical image stabilization. With both smartphones, users can shoot 4K videos at up to 60 frames per second, however, the Zenfone 9 also supports 8K video recording at 24 frames per second.
On the Zenfone 9, users get a side-mounted fingerprint scanner, whereas the iPhone 13 mini features Face ID, Apple’s face recognition system. Other common features on both smartphones include dual speakers, dual-band Wi-Fi, and NFC. The Asus Zenfone 9 comes in four colors – Midnight Black, Moonlight White, Sunset Red, and Starry Blue. On the other hand, the iPhone 13 mini comes in six colors – Green, Pink, Blue, Midnight, Starlight, and (Product) Red. Lastly, both the Zenfone 9 and the iPhone 13 mini have a starting price of $699 in the United States. The iPhone 13 mini has a few advantages thanks to its longer software support and likely better camera performance. However, the Zenfone 9 offers a smoother 120Hz refresh rate display and a bigger battery with faster charging, both features that tilt the scales in its favor.
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