Asus takes on Motorola in Brazil with new smartphones

The Zenfone range is aimed at users who want better smartphones but can't afford higher end devices.

Asus has launched a range of mid-range smartphones aimed at Brazilian consumers looking for a "premium" mobile experience without having to spend much.

The two budget dual-SIM models from the Zenfone range were launched on Wednesday and will soon be available to consumers: the Zenfone 5 is the cheaper, most basic alternative and the Zenfone 6 has a larger screen and an improved camera, combined with better processing power.

The Zenfone 5 and 6 will be made in Brazil and priced at R$650 ($262) and R$1,000 ($404) respectively. Within that same price range, the only main competitor is Motorola, who launched the Moto G last year with the same intention of offering a higher spec device at a smaller price tag.

In addition, there will be a special introductory offer of the Zenfone 5 in Brazil, to mark the manufacturer's 25th anniversary. For a limited period of time the simplest version will be available for R$499 ($200).

The lower price tag, combined with the massive PR efforts of the company in the Brazilian mass media, could well position the Asus device as a bestseller among intermediary smartphones.

Both Asus devices are equipped with Intel's dual-core Atom Z2560 processor. The Zenfone 6 has 1.6 GHz of processing power, while some flavors of the Zenfone 5 model are available on that spec and also on a basic version with 1.2 GHz.

The Zenfone 6 has 2GB RAM alongside a 13-megapixel rear camera. The more basic model is available with an 8-megapixel rear camera and the same storage spec - a surprising amount of memory for a device within this price range.