Featuring a 6.8-inch Full HD display, the Zenfone 3 Ultra is without question one of the biggest smartphones you can buy right now. Pushing the limits of what can be considered a phablet, the Zenfone 3 is a great choice for those who use their smartphone as their primary computing device.
In this article, we will show you some awesome Zenfone 3 features that will help you get the most out of your extra large smartphone. Best part is that not any of these tips require any additional apps or other downloads, everything is available right out of the box. So let’s get started.
ASUS Zenfone 3 Tips and Tricks
- Add your favorite apps to the lock screen
- Add a sticky note to the home screen
- Customize the Quick Settings Panel for faster device tweaks
- Record your phone calls to an audio file
- Charge the battery of another mobile device with your Zenfone
- Tips for maximizing battery life
- Always capture the perfect shot with your camera
- Get professional-style photography touch-ups on the fly
- Turn your pictures into a creative slideshow
- Use your phone as a Wi-Fi hotspot
1. Add your favorite apps to the lock screen
Lock screen shortcuts, as the name implies, allow you to launch a favorite app directly from the Lock Screen. The Zenfone 3 lock screen includes quick access buttons for the camera, phone, and web browser by default, but these shortcuts can be changed to launch other apps on the lock screen by using the following steps:
- Launch the quick settings panel by swiping down twice from the top of the display and then tap the gear icon to launch the device settings.
- Scroll down and select Lock screen, then select Quick access.
- From the Customized quick access field, slide the bar to ON.
- Select the app that you want to replace and choose a new app from the list.
Bonus Tip: You can hold and drag the quick access buttons to rearrange their order.
2. Add a sticky note to the home screen
There are a massive amount of reminder apps available for Android that can be used to manage your “to do” list but some people need something like a “Post-It” note that will stick out and be in front of their face at all times. You can add sticky notes to your screen so you can look at them regardless of which app you are currently working in. To create a sticky note on the Zenfone 3:
- Launch the app drawer and choose Quick Memo.
- Tap on the squiggled line to write with your finger or stylus. Tap the keyboard icon to type your note.
- Tap the pushpin icon to stick the note to the Home screen.
3. Customize the Quick Settings Panel for faster device tweaks
The Quick settings panel gives you single touch access to some of the wireless features and settings on the Zenfone 3. Swipe down from the top of the display to launch the quick settings panel.
Each quick setting feature is represented by a button and can be enabled or disabled by tapping on the buttons. A blue button indicates that the feature is currently enabled while a gray button indicates that a feature is disabled. Green buttons are the individual utilities that you can easily access via the Quick Settings panel.
Some of the buttons available on the quick settings panel include Wi-Fi, auto-rotate, Sound, do not disturb, one handed operation, location, airplane mode, mobile data, bright filter, hotspot, Bluetooth, and auto-sync. Below the clock, you will find a slider for changing the screen brightness, as well as buttons to open the display and phone settings. You can also swipe up on the clock area to view the notifications panel.
You can add or remove buttons from the Quick settings panel by tapping on the edit button (paper and pencil). Next, tap the box beside the feature you wish to add or remove from the panel. A checked box means that the button will appear in the Quick Settings panel. Tap the left pointing arrow to go back.
4. Record your phone calls to an audio file
Have you ever wanted to record a phone call? Maybe you have a bad experience with a company over the phone and you want proof of the incident. Alternatively, maybe you received training or some other help that you want to reference again later.
The ASUS Zenfone 3 has a built in feature that allows you to easily record a phone conversation for future reference. It’s important to note that you should always obtain permission from the other party before recording a call.
To record a phone conversation on the Zenfone 3, call a contact or dial a number and then tap the “REC” button. Recording will be indicated by the button and you can stop the recording at any time by pressing the record button again.
When you are done recording, you can access the file by swiping down from the top of the screen, and then tapping the Call recording saved notification. Remember to always ask permission from the other parties involved before recording a call.
5. Charge the battery of another mobile device with your Zenfone
A Majority of us are familiar with the use of cell phone power bank to handle emergency power needs for our smartphones. The ASUS Zenfone 3 has a huge 4600 mAh battery that can be used as an external power supply for other mobile devices equipped with a USB charging port.
The reverse charging mode only requires a “on the go” USB cable that will need to be bought separately. This cable is fitted with a USB standard port on one end and the normal android compatible pin on the other end. You can find very affordable OTG cable options on Amazon.
To charge other mobile devices with the Zenfone 3:
- Connect one end of the USB cable to the device that you want to charge and the other to the OTG cable.
- Connect the other end of the OTG cable to the Zenfone 3. It is important that you make sure the OTG cable is securely connected to the Zenfone 3 to ensure proper charging.
- Choose either of the following charging modes:
- OTG mode: Charges the attached device with a standard current, up to 0.5A.
- Reverse charging mode: Powers off the Zenfone 3 to provide rapid reverse charging that is capable of outputting a high charging current up to 1.5A. The maximum output current is dependent on the device being charged. In this mode, the Zenfone 3 will monitor the charge levels. When battery power on the Zenfone 3 falls below 20%, the phone will automatically turn on and charge in OTG mode. Reverse charging mode will only support devices with CDP (Charging Downstream Port) mode.
6. Tips for maximizing battery life
Without a battery charger or a spare battery with you everywhere you go, you’ll have to make due with minimizing the consumption of battery juice. Here are some ways you can conserve battery power on the Zenfone 3 for longer life between charges:
- Close all running apps that are not in use. Launch the recent applications menu by tapping the recent apps physical button. Tap and hold on the application you want to close and swipe it to the right. This should kill the process and free up some RAM.
- Keep the speaker volume at a low level. When Smart Mode is enabled, Zen UI chooses the best audio quality for the currently running app.
- Decrease the brightness of the display from the quick settings by swiping down from the top of the screen and using the slider to adjust the screens brightness.
- Disable wireless radios that are not in use such as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth via the quick settings panel.
- Turn off the display auto rotate function, also accessible through the quick settings panel.
- Disable all auto-sync features on your device. Changing this setting will not only conserve battery power but also mobile data when you are not near Wi-Fi. The only disadvantage is that you will have to remember to manually sync to see your data across other devices.
7. Always capture the perfect shot with your camera
Instead of relying on taking the perfect snapshot, it’s better to take multiple photos of your subject. If the only photo of your romantic kiss in front of Niagara Falls is out of focus, you will probably regret it later.
Using the Time Rewind feature on the Zenfone 3’s camera will set the shutter to take burst shots two seconds before pressing the capture button. This will produce a timeline of images from where you can choose the best image to save on your gallery.
To use Time Rewind, simply tap the advanced settings icon (located next to the video record button) and tap the associated button to enable it. Next, tap the camera icon to start capturing photos and adjust the time interval and direction that you want the photos to be played back. Tap the check mark icon when done.
After pressing the shutter, the Time Rewind view is displayed on top of a captured photo. You can rotate the button on the viewer to browse through the photos you just took and select the best. Tapping the Best icon will have the Zenfone 3 suggest the best photo from the timeline for you.
Bonus Tip: Time Rewind can only be used with the rear camera.
8. Get professional-style photography touch-ups on the fly
When taking pictures with the Zenfone 3, you can use the Beautification feature to make live enhancements on your subject’s face prior to taking a shot. To enable this feature in the camera app, first tap the advanced settings icon and choose Beautification.
Next, tap the camera icon to capture your photo. Tap the thumbnail to preview the photo and display the beautification settings. Tap the beauty camera icon, select your preferred Beautification setting, and then tap the checkmark to save the photo.
9. Turn your pictures into a creative slideshow
You can use the MiniMovie feature from the Zenfone 3 photo gallery to easily create slideshow presentations of your favorite pictures and share them on social media. It’s an easy way to create and share slideshows of, for instance, that amazing trip you took over the weekend to your family’s lake house.
Create a MiniMovie from a photo folder by following these steps:
- Launch the Gallery app, and then tap the menu icon to select the location of our photo folder.
- Select the photo folder and then tap the menu icon and select Auto MiniMovie.
- Choose a theme to apply to your photo slide show by tapping the template to see its preview.
- After deciding on the appropriate theme template, tap the disc icon to save the slideshow. You can access your saved slideshows from the File Manager by navigating to Movies > MiniMovie.
- Slideshows can be shared on social networking sites or instant messaging apps.
10. Use your phone as a Wi-Fi hotspot
It can be pretty frustrating when working on the go, from a hotel room or airport for example, only to find there’s no Wi-Fi internet access. Even when at home, what happens if your home network ISP goes down, leaving you without access to the web?
Lo and behold, you can share the mobile internet connection on the Zenfone 3 with other devices when Wi-Fi service is not available by enabling the portable Wi-Fi hotspot feature.
- Swipe up from the bottom of your Home screen, and then tap System settings.
- Tap More > Tethering > Portable Wi-Fi hotspot.
- Turn the associated slider to ON.
Bonus Tip: Your mobile internet connection can also be shared with a laptop or tablet over Bluetooth. Pair your phone with a second device and then from the settings screen, tap More > Tethering, then slide Bluetooth tethering to ON.
Note:Some mobile carriers may require you add this feature to your data plan before using the hotspot function. You connection speed may also be throttled by your mobile carrier depending on data usage.
Recommended: How to turn your phablet into a wireless external hard drive.