ZTE Axon 40 Ultra | Against large ones at a lower price

Yes, it has some flaws, but the ZTE Axon 40 Ultra proved to be a bargain. Less expensive but just as powerful as its competitors, it even allows itself some amazing innovations, including an invisible front camera.

Posted at 9:00 am.

Karim Benessaye

Karim Benessaye

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It’s impossible to miss what has become the hallmark of Axon from Chinese manufacturer ZTE since 2020: a virtually invisible front camera. There is no notch or black bar at the very top of the screen, allowing video, for example, to use the entire 6.8-inch screen.

This camera, hidden under glass, offers 16-megapixel photos of satisfactory quality, in any case much better than the first version offered on the Axon 20, which often lacked sharpness. However, we don’t yet have the richness of colors and contrasts that the Pixel 6 Pro or OnePlus 10 Pro have.

Another standout is ZTE’s ability to offer what the best Android phones love at an unbeatable price. Here we have the same Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 processor used in the Galaxy S22 Ultra, but $600 cheaper. However, Samsung has other advantages as well. Our Geekbench 5 tests showed us that, with the exception of regular iPhones, ZTE’s latest models compare favorably with their competitors.

The specs of the Axon 40 Ultra are the best in 2022: AMOLED screen with adjustable refresh rate up to 120Hz, 2480 x 1116 or 400 ppi resolution with 1500 nits peak. Beautiful screen, clean and bright, readable even in direct sunlight.

ZTE is proud of its triple rear camera system, each with 64 MP. The first is wide-angle with a 16mm equivalent focal length and macro focusing within 4cm of the subject. The second one is called “Humanity” with a 35mm equivalent focal length and uses a Sony IMX787 sensor for better accuracy, especially for humans. Finally, the “telescope” achieves 5.7x optical zoom with image stabilization.

This equipment gave us photos with good detail control and accurate rendering. On the other hand, after comparing it with the iPhone 13 Pro Max, we found that its colors are very washed out. Look at yourself.

  • Axon 40 Ultra vs. iPhone 13 Pro Max


    Axon 40 Ultra vs. iPhone 13 Pro Max

  • Axon 40 Ultra vs. iPhone 13 Pro Max


    Axon 40 Ultra vs. iPhone 13 Pro Max


The 5000mAh battery supports 65W fast charging and we have a charger as a nice gift. It took us just 45 minutes to fully charge a dead phone after seven hours of video playback. With normal use, it easily reaches 40 hours of battery life.

Finally, it’s one of the first Pixel 6 Pro phones to be compatible with the new WiFi 6E standard, which promises to be more stable and take advantage of the less-used 6GHz bands. Due to the lack of a suitable router, we were unable to verify these claims.

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No miracle will save: we have not integrated a magnetic charge, so practical.

Battery management allows the Axon 40 Ultra to ruthlessly close background apps. We noticed that some notifications, especially from Twitter and Slack, took an unusually long time to appear.

ZTE does not provide any guidance regarding the water or dust resistance of its phone.

While manufacturers such as Google and Samsung promise to offer security updates for five years after purchase, ZTE does not. For the Chinese manufacturer, which is often targeted by Western governments, this is worrying.

A sign of still incomplete presence in Canada, prices are in US dollars only. Stimulus.

One buys?

The Axon 40 Ultra is undeniably a bargain, offering some of the best features of Android phones at a great price. But that won’t convince an Apple user to step over the fence and leave selfie enthusiasts and discerning photographers alike.

Axon 40 Ultra

Manufacturer: ZTE

Price: $799 (8GB/128GB) and $899 (12GB/256GB).

Rating: 4 out of 5

On presale on until June 21

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