ZTE AXON 30 smartphone with under-screen camera coming soon

ZTE Axon 30 5G

The ZTE Axon 30 5G with its under-screen selfie camera technology is coming to Australia – hopefully in September. The new under-screen technology enables the selfie camera to be completely hidden beneath the screen while still being able to ‘see’ through it to capture an image. This means no more ugly ‘notch’ or camera cut-out or interruption to the on-screen image. This feature has also surfaced on Samsung’s recently launched Galaxy Z Fold 5G foldable phone.

ZTE has long been a white-label smartphone and modem maker for major telcos like Telstra, but it seldom has a retail brand presence. In 2020, ZTE and its white labels had about 10% of the US market, followed by Motorola at 5.83% and TCL at 2.34%. Its strength was in the <6” white label segment, with Nubia RedMagic building a strong 6”+ gaming following. But US carriers had to drop cross-subsidies (a monthly data/voice plan subsiding hardware making it look cheaper), and then we had the Pandemic!

The ZTE Axon 30 5G looks very good on paper, and if it comes in at under $800, it will be a class leader.

Brief specs – ZTE AXON 30 5G

Screen6.92”, 2640 x 1080, 20.5:9, 401ppi, 10-bit, 1 billion colour cinema-grade, 100% DCI-P3, 120Hz refresh and 360Hz touch AMOLED
ProcessorQualcomm SD870 processor – 1+3+4 cores 3.2Ghz
Thermal managementTriple ice cooling system, consisting of a large VC liquid cooling plate, thermal gel, and graphene copper-based composite material
Ram/Storage8/12GB RAM and 128/256/512GB UFS 3.1 storage plus 5GB memory fusion (swap space)
Read cameraQuad AI camera, Sony IMX682 64MP f/1.8 PDAF + 8MP f/2.2 ultra-wide + 5MP f/2.4 Macro+ 2MP f/2.4 depth and multi-camera simultaneous shooting and dual video stabilisation, 4K@60fps
USC selfie16MP, f/2.0, 1080p@30fps, Special pixel matrix, unique driver circuits, independent display chip, front camera, in-house selfie algorithm, and larger light-sensitive 4-in-1 1.12 binned to 2.24um equivalent large pixel camera
Battery4200mAh battery and 65W fast charge supports USB-C PD and QC 4.0+
SoundDTS:X Ultra stereo speakers
Wi-FiWi-Fi AX 2 x 2 MU-MIMO four-stream 2400Mbps with a seamless switch to 5G
CommsBT 5.1, dual-band GPS, NFC and USB-C 3.1 Gen 1 (5Gbps) OTG
5G5G low-band and sub-6Ghz full support, hybrid dual sim/microSD
BuildBlack or Aqua 3D composite polymer back, composite frame and toughened glass front
Size 170.2 x 77.8 x 7.8 mm x 189g
AndroidGoogle Android 11 and MYOS 11 User Interface and three updates
WebsiteGlobal Website here. Note that the Global version will be sold here.
PriceFrom US$499

GadgetGuy’s take

ZTE will find it tough going up against OPPO, vivo, realme and other established brands with excellent retail distribution. But their philosophy to win on specs is a smart one. Note that only a global version will be sold here and not via the usual retailers. And those those specs look spesh!

Read other ZTE news and reviews here