The ZTE Axon is a hard sell. Not because it doesn't look nice, or because it doesn't have flagship specs. In fact, the price is actually quite compelling for what you get. But people just don't know the brand, which means competing handsets from Samsung, Motorola, HTC and Apple will always take the spotlight. Even the OnePlus 2 is carving out its own niche. Where does that leave the Axon?

That's a conundrum many buyers will be faced with over the coming months. Making the decision even more difficult is what the Axon offers. Just look at the specs below. Not bad, right?

ZTE Axon specs:

  • 5.5-inch Quad HD display
  • 1.8GHz Snapdragon 810 processor
  • 4GB of RAM
  • 32GB of storage
  • 13-megapixel/2-megapixel dual camera
  • 3000mAh battery
  • NFC
  • Quick Charge support
  • Android 5.1

Those specs can compete with any phone on the market, let alone devices that fall into more affordable circles—of which there are many. In the past month alone, we've seen the OnePlus 2 ($329), Moto X Pure Edition ($399) and Moto G ($180) announced, and all of them have a much larger following compared to the relatively unknown ZTE. That's gives the Axon, which goes for $450, a mountain to climb.

Can the device carve out its own following? With those specs, and at that price, it's certainly possible. But it's not always just about specs, and it's not always about price (though it's partly about price). Jon used the devices for several days, and formulated some thoughts about this newcomer in the video above. Check it out if the ZTE Axon is on your radar.

Jon approached this the same way he would in any review; he shares thoughts on design, experience, battery, camera and value. Do all of those categories combine to justify a phone that's $450? Watch the video to find out.