I am not a fan of smartwatches, I think as mere smartphone accessories they are too expensive and should cost what would be deemed as disposable money for markets they target. So, you can color me interested by the first generation ASUS ZenWatch then, as it has now been slashed to just $129 on Google Play.
You may have been thinking that ASUS is all about the ZenFone range, but the company has plenty of other smartphone products (FonePad anyone?) and has just announced the Pegasus 2 handset. In fact the exact name is the Pegasus 2 Plus X550, a mid-range device that comes with a solid enough design and spec sheet.
With design being one of the only significant differentiating factors between Android Wear smartwatches, the ASUS ZenWatch was a winner. It was among the best looking wearables, but it has recently been replaced by the ZenWatch 2, which is great news if you have your eyes on the original model. That's because the Taiwanese company has decided to slash the price of its original device to a very appealing $149.99.
ASUS has often struggled to make money in the smartphone market, but thanks to the well-received ZenFone range the company is pushing itself among the elite companies. Indeed, on the back of the ZenFone 2, ASUS sold 1.5 million smartphones through the month of May and says it expects to shift 2 million throughout June. With those sales figures the Taiwanese brand made money on its smartphone division last month.
ASUS has been teasing the ZenFone Selfie and the company launched the handset today at Computex in its home country of Taiwan. The Selfie follows in the footsteps of the ZenFone 2, one of the better mid-range devices on the market, and delivers the same kind of solid specs and presumably affordable price tag.
Earlier this week there were reports that Asus is working on a new smartphone that would be called the ZenFone Selfie and be oriented just how its name suggests. Yes, it would be another smartphone that is looking to piggyback on the selfie trend, which to the rest of us means a solid mid-range handset with a good front facing camera. After those early reports, Asus has now all but confirmed that the ZenFone Selfie is real and that it is incoming.
A new, unannounced, ASUS smartphone has been certified by TENAA, the Chinese regulatory body that passes products for sale in the country. The device comes with the model number Z00EDB and is likely a new addition to the company's ZenFone line of handsets.
ASUS is planning a new tablet line based off its successful ZenFone line up, with the company working on both a 7-inch and an 8-inch slate. The latter product, the ZenPad 8 has leaked online and will be a solidly spec'd machine, whereas the ZenPad 7 will be more modest.
The current ASUS ZenWatch is one of the best wearables on the markets, good-looking and solidly spec'd, but the company said that the sequel would not arrive until next year. That was the news from ASUS CEO Jerry Shen back in April, but news in Taiwan now suggests that Shen has changed his mind and says the smartwatch is on course to be launched during the third quarter of 2015 instead.
Solid sales of the ASUS ZenFone and the warm reception of the ZenFone 2 in January led the company to make bold sales predications, with the Taiwanese giant aiming for 30 million smartphone sales in 2015. However, the opening of the year was actually worse than expected and ASUS has been forced to revaluate how many units it will move, although the company still expects to sell a very respectable 25 million smartphones this year.