Asus Zenfone 11 Ultra review: when bigger isn't better

Asus has ditched its small phone niche with the Zenfone 11 Ultra and pitted itself against mightier competition – a smart move or a swing and a miss?

A photo of the Asus Zenfone 11 Ultra
(Image: © Basil Kronfli)

Digital Camera World Verdict

Asus has made a rod for its own back by going Ultra, pitting itself against giants like the S24 Ultra and Xiaomi 14 Ultra without having a key point of differentiation. So while the Zenfone 11 Ultra has many highlights – loads of storage, a great screen, near-gaming-phone power and a relatively clean interface – its punchy price and mediocre camera make it a tough sell in a world with the OnePlus 12. When the price drops, it'll be a great gaming or streaming option, but at its RRP, unless you need a big flat screen and a 3.5mm jack, it misses the mark.

Pros

  • +

    Good-looking screen

  • +

    Great gaming performance

  • +

    IP68 water resistance

  • +

    3.5mm headphone jack

Cons

  • -

    Sub-par camera hardware

  • -

    Clumsy photo processing

  • -

    Awkward wireless charging point

  • -

    Gimmicky AI elements

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If there’s one word that’s almost as overused as AI when it comes to phones, it’s Ultra, and the latest in a long line of Ultra phones comes from Asus, with its tradition-breaking Zenfone 11 Ultra.

Why is the Zenfone 11 Ultra a break from tradition? While the Zenfone 9 and Zenfone 10 were compact powerhouses, the Zenfone 11’s size is much more Ultra. On top of being much, much bigger, it also has Ultra features like wireless charging, a telephoto camera, and a big, very good-looking screen. 

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Basil Kronfli

Basil Kronfli is a freelance technology journalist and content creator with a number of specialisms. He started his career at Canon Europe, before joining Phone Arena and Recombu as a tech writer and editor. From there, he headed up and runs Tech[edit], a technology YouTube channel, and has worked alongside this role at Future as a Senior Producer, sharpening his considerable video production skills. 


His technical expertise has been called on numerous times by mainstream media, with appearances and interviews on outlets like Sky News, and he provides Digital Camera World with insight and reviews on camera phones, video editing software and laptops, on-camera monitors, camera sliders, microphones and much more.