This is the ZTE Axon 30 Ultra 5G, a phone that ZTE announced for the Chinese market in April, and that will make it to global markets on May 27.
Starting at $749/€749/£649 for the 8/128GB trim and moving up to $849/€849/£739 for the 12/256GB top offer, the ZTE Axon 30 Ultra 5G is rather aggressively priced and it seemingly cut no corners getting there.
You get a potent 66W charger inside the box as well as a USB cable, earbuds, a USB-C to 3.5mm dongle and a thin case that leaves the phone’s flat sides exposed.
The design of the Axon 30 Ultra 5G stands out immediately. Sharp lines meet squarish corners, metal meets glass, precision meets function.
The phone’s sides are flat, similar to the iPhone 12. However, unlike the iPhone, the matte back panel curves towards the front, resulting in a thinner side frame, which digs nicely into the palm when you’re holding the Axon 30 Ultra 5G.
Your eye is drawn to the camera island on the rear and for good reason. Not only has ZTE tucked the imaging hardware into an impressive-looking enclave, but the four lenses are impressive on their own.
Three 64MP cameras cover the wide-angle camera (26mm, equivalent), the ultra-wide angle (13mm) and the short telephoto camera (35mm plus digital) – an approach similar to the Galaxy S21 and S21+, only with more optical and hence less digital zoom. Then there’s an 8MP periscope that delivers 5x optical zoom.
ZTE have equipped the Axon 30 Ultra 5G with a plethora of shooting modes – shoot with all three cameras at the same time, create low-light portraits with long-exposure light effects, use any of a number of aesthetic filters, there’s color shift, heck there’s even a Hitchcock-inspired Dolly Zoom effect.
We’ll test all of this and more in our full review. We’re especially interested in that 35mm portrait camera as ZTE calls it.
The rest is all flagship phone business as usual. The ZTE Axon 30 Ultra packs the flagship silicon-of-choice, Snapdragon 888, with up to 12GB of RAM, there’s an ample 4,600mAh battery with blazing 66W charging (100% in 46 minutes, advertised), ample 6.67-inch AMOLED with blazing 144Hz adaptive refresh rate and 300Hz touch-sampling rate.
The Axon 30 Ultra 5G has a liquid cooling chamber to help with sustained performance, linear vibration motors and linear dual speakers, and much, much more.
Stay tuned for our full review, coming May 27.