ASUS Zenbook 3 review: So similar to the Macbook Air that I'm surprised the lawyers haven't been round

Steve Hogarty
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ASUS Zenbook 3

The ASUS Zenbook 3 is inspired by the Macbook Air, from its ultra-thin form factor and floaty lightness down to its entirely flush keyboard and perfectly weighted hinges. Like Apple’s littlest laptop, the screen can be lifted open with a single finger, and the base, rather than be lifted up with it, will remain resting on the table. It’s an almost imperceptible touch, but one that shows ASUS is paying attention to more than just appearances.

The Zenbook 3 is a powerful Windows laptop wearing a Macbook’s skin like a mad serial killer, but the kind of serial killer who puts the groundwork in. This is Zodiac-level stuff.

So flattering is this laptop that it even mimics the Air’s flaws. It has only a single USB Type-C port (a multi-adaptor is sold separately), and the flat keyboard is too shallow to do any serious work on.

And because it’s an ASUS, it is turgid with pre-installed bloatware. McAfee will hound you for cash, and intrusive pop-ups will beg you to install software you don’t need. It’s a trashy and cheap user experience that undermines the rest of the package.

Wipe all the crap off however, and the Zenbook 3 is not just a competent copycat, but one of the neatest and most powerful laptops of its size.

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