Design and Build - The Aluminum framed body gives it a premium look with phthalo blue, ion gold, and chromium color options. The metal frame body definitely gives the device a luxurious look but makes the device a bit slippery as well. The Axon Pro is however a combination of metal and Plastic. The bottom and top features plastic while the rest of the body is of metal.
This look may however overcome the ZTE reputation of manufacturing cheap- looking devices. At the first look we feel like the front sports the dual-speakers but its not. Its the regular ear piece that is featured in a different design of triangular shaped cutouts.
Below the display we can spot three capacitive buttons. The power button is featured on the right side and the volume controls on the left. The 3.5mm audio jack and noise cancellation mic on the top and t6he bottom featuring the micro USB port. All the ports and buttons are logically arranged in places we are familiar with. The right corner also sports a camera button which becomes active only while the camera app is running. This means you can't long press it to launch the camera.
Display - The Axon Pro comes with a 5.5 inch TFT LCD display with a screen resolution of 1440x2560 pixels. The Quad-HD display results in great viewing experience with fine details for everything. The visibility under sunlight is decent and the colors seems to be more accurate and clear. The ZTE Axon Pro is also the first device to feature the Corning’s antimicrobial Gorilla Glass, which gives the surface that slick feel when you touch. It claims to kill germs and viruses that linger around the display screen. Its not yet proved as whether the Corning Glass will perform this function as well.
Software and Performance - The Axon Pro comes with exciting specs as it is considered to be a flagship device from ZTE. When it comes to the internals the device is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 octa-core processor. The processor in fact is a very powerful one but the chipset employed may however be a put off as the 810 has always been complained of over-heating issues. No matter what simple tasks you did the device seems to be heating up. Heating issues are more evident while paying games and juggling between apps.
The 4GB RAM space gives lot of options for the user. Having more breathing space the apps and graphics on the handset function without any glitches. The device runs on Android 5.1.1 Lollipop with a ZTE skin on top. The UI is user friendly with all your favorite apps showing up through the shortcut menu. Even though the Axon pro uses the version 2.1 of the 810 chipset which is supposed to run cooler , the phone still gets heated up and majority of the times the heat comes from the top half of the rear. The notification area, settings screen, contacts, calendar are all what you expect to see in the latest version of Android.
The ZTE provides only a few apps including the Camera, Mi-Moment note app, Sound recorder, RockMyRun, Yahoo! Sports etc. RockMyRun is a service that provides music at your desired running pace. Yahoo! Sports provides sport information for teams and leagues that you choose. The internal memory comes up to 32 GB with no option for an expandable external memory. The Axon Pro comes with Sensors including Accelerometer, gyro, Compass, proximity.
Battery - The 3,000mAh battery can provide you with unlimited usage for a day. You can even juice out more if you customize your phone settings including brightness and connectivity. The Li-Ion battery comes with 240 hour standby Backup and 12 hours talk time.
Camera - The ZTE Axon Pro features dual rear camera. The 13 MP rear camera with an f/1.8 aperture lens comes along with the 2 MP camera that is positioned above it to help capture 3D depth for re-focusing photos. The front snapper is an 8MP one.
The shutter seems to be very quick resulting in clearer and sharper pictures. At times the over-heated phone may take a lot of time to save the pictures to the camera-roll.
The pixel resolution comes up to 4128x3096. The ZTE Axon pro is even capable of recording videos at 2160p@ 30fps. Auto focus, touch focus, Face detection, HDR and Panorama are the other camera features.
The pictures taken in Low-Light seems decent but nothing exceptional when compared to the camera capacities of the current flagships in this ecosystem.
Sound Quality- The ZTE Axon Pro comes with a single front-facing speaker which produces sounds at the user rather than away from it. The device is also capable of playing and recording Hi-Fi audio. Much praise to its built in digital-to-audio converter and analog-to-digital converter.
Android Lollipop out-of-the-box
Good call quality performance
Only 32Gb storage option
Lacks SD storage
HDR mode softens details and makes photos look too artificial
Design is on the chunky side
Earpiece placement is awkward
810 chipset makes the device over heated while power performance
The gadgets world is a tough place for any smartphone manufacturer as it is so very unpredictable. If one does not follow the right steps to success then they will be instantly plummeted down into ashes. From the specs we see that ZTE has focused on the right areas when it came to ZTE Axon Pro.
The display is enchanting with the required features along with the Corning's anti-microbial protection. The camera works well with the adequate features. The design is dense and chunky. The audio-quality of the device is outstanding as the device has front-facing speakers.
The shortcut camera button on the side posed as a disappointment as it doesn't launch the camera by itself. It can be only used to capture the images once the app is on.
The major spoiler is of course the 810 processor which gets warm even with simple operations. Taking pictures becomes a very hot affair as the whole rear gets heated up very badly. You sure are going to get your fingers toasted while playing video games for a short while.
The ZTE Axon Pro could have been a stiff competition to all the expensive flagshipo Android phones if the processor didn't overheat.