The Zenfone 3 Max comes with a fairly basic package with only the most minimal accessories, save for one extra thing. As mentioned before, the phone comes with a USB OTG adapter for connecting other devices to the phone to charge them. Alternatively, you can also use it to connect accessories such as USB drives or a keyboard.
Apart from that you also get a 5V 2A charger. The Zenfone 3 Max does not support fast charging, which is concerning, considering the size of the battery.
Then there is also a standard microUSB cable, a SIM ejector tool, and some paperwork. There is no bundled headset with the phone, so you will have to bring your own.
The Zenfone 3 Max has the family look that connects it to the other Zenfone 3 devices as well as some of the other Asus phones. The overall look of the phone is quite simple but Asus has tried to spruce it up a little in some places, such as the shiny silver accents around the back and the buttons on the side.
The front of the phone is predominantly taken by the display with a screen to display ratio of 73% according to Asus. The display is covered by a scratch resistant glass with an oleophobic coating. Asus does not specify the brand of the glass but we found it to be just as scratch resistant as Corning Gorilla Glass 4 in our testing. The glass is 2.5D and has a slight curve around the edges, which looks attractive and makes it easier to swipe from the edges.
Above the display is the earpiece, front facing camera, proximity sensor and ambient light sensor. There is also a notification LED that is hidden in the right corner.
Below the display are the three capacitive navigation keys. As with other Asus phones, these keys aren't backlit, which makes them harder to find in the dark.
Along the sides of the phone we find the power and volume buttons on the right. The buttons are placed in a convenient location and arrangement and are easy to use. You get a good tactile feedback from them and there is no unnecessary wobble.
On the left side of the phone is the hybrid SIM card tray that can hold one micro SIM and one nano SIM, or one micro SIM and one microSD.
On the bottom of the phone is the primary microphone on the left, microUSB connector in the middle, and loudspeaker on the right.
On top of the phone is the headphone jack and the secondary microphone.
On the back of the phone we find the 16 megapixel cameta lens flanked by the dual LED flash on the left and IR sensor for the laser autofocus on the right. The glass on the camera lens is not scratch-resistant, and the same blade that made no mark on the display glass was able to scratch it easily, so you should be careful with it. Below it is the fingerprint sensor.
The back of the phone has a metal cover in the center but the top and bottom bits are still made out of plastic. The plastic portions don't blend all that well with the metal and also have some rough edges.
While design is subjective, we thought the Zenfone 3 Max looked equal parts understated and stylish, which should make it appeal to a wide audience. The general fit and finish was just about adequate but the overall build quality felt good and the phone has a solid feel to it that inspires confidence.
In terms of handling, the tight packaging makes it one of the more compact 5.5-inch smartphones on the market and despite the large battery inside, the phone never feels ungainly or bulky. It's still a relatively large phone though, so it won't be everyone's cup of tea.
The Zenfone 3 Max has a 5.5-inch, 1920x1080 IPS LCD. The display quality is quite impressive for a phone in this price range. The display is sharp with sufficient brightness and good viewing angles. The colors are ever so slightly muted but still look great and more importantly, accurate.
The color temperature is on the cool side and there is slight color banding seen in some images but these are only minor gripes. Overall the display on this phone is really good.