There are no shortages of big phones. The successor to last year's iPhone 13 Mini wasnixed by Apple, and replaced with the new iPhone 14 Plus. Small phones are hard to find, but they're still around. If you're tired of straining your fingers to reach parts of a screen, then the Zenfone 9 is the phone for you.
Before you read any further, I have to tell you a few things. The phone is available in the US, but it won't work on the network of another company. T-Mobile and AT&T are the best places to use it. Most phone makers now offer at least three to five years of software support, but Asus is only giving two. Get ready for the future. The Zenfone 9 has perks that are hard to find, such as a compact screen with flagship performance, and a headphone jack. That is extremely rare.
It's small but mighty.
There are a lot of goodies in this little package, but it isn't a flagship phone. It's easy to wrap my fingers around its small size. It's still one of the smallest screens out there, even though it's not as big as the iPhone 13 Mini.
When I watched Love, Death, and Robots while on the exercise bike at the gym, the display felt limited, even though it never felt cramped. I had to keep my phone close to my eyes so I could see what was happening in the show. The screen is bright enough to be used on sunny days. You won't find a feature like the 120-Hz refresh rate on the iPhone 13 Mini.
The texture on the back of the device is what makes this phone so nice to hold. It feels like a rubber mat on a playground. I like when phone manufacturers make their phones feel different than their predecessors. It is easy to clean, but you will still see some light marks.
The power button has a side-mounted fingerprint sensor that can be used to access the device. It's rare for a flagship phone to have a headphone jack at the top, and the Zenfone 9 has stereo speakers that are pretty good. You can use it to make tap-to-pay payments. The screen is protected by Gorilla Glass, which is as good as you will find on most high-end phones.
There is something missing. There is a wireless charging station. Even though you can't charge this phone with a cable, you can still get a charging accessory with the phone. It comes with a case, but it is not very protective. The small phone has a 4,300-mAh battery, which is enough for a day's use. I get through a day and a half with average use. It's good.