Nokia has made its way back to the handset scene with the announcement of a total of 4 Android powered phones by HMD Global, Nokia’s new partner in the smartphone business. The most recent is the Nokia 8, which is also Nokia’s first flagship device after its come back.
How the mighty have fallen is a typical reference to the Nokia brand, however the brand embarked on taking back its position in the midst of stiff competition from other Android devices as the number one smartphone brand with the release of successive devices into the entry level segment with the Nokia 3, followed by the Nokia 5 as a mid-range and the Nokia 8 as a flagship model.
Nokia decided to keep the design simple on the Nokia 8 with much focus on the camera. Although simple and sleek, the design doesn’t seem to catch so much attention when compared to other smartphone flagship models in the market. In fact, the design is so similar to that of the Nokia 5, speaker grill, USB type C port, mouthpiece, navigation keys and even both the power button and volume rocker are on the same position as the Nokia 5 except for the dual camera at the back.
It has an aluminium unibody design with metal edges and comes in different colour variant. The body is thin with thickness around 7.9mm, comfortable to hold in the hand with the curved edges. Screen is 5.3-inch with a Quad HD resolution.
Just below the screen is the oval shaped fingerprint scanner which is placed between the two navigation keys. The fingerprint scanner is within reach and when setup, unlocks the phone quickly by placing the registered finger on it. At the top of the display is the front selfie camera, the earpiece and a Nokia logo to the far right.
The bottom has the mic, the USB type C port and a mono speaker with the 3.5mm audio jack at placed at the top of the device.
The back seems to be catchy to the eye, towards the top is the dual camera and dual LED flash, separated by the ZEIS branding. All of these are enclosed in a bump glass surrounded by an oval shaped metallic ring.
With an emphasis on the camera, Nokia revived its age long partnership with Carl Zeiss and equipped both front and back cameras with ZEISS optics to guarantee improvement in light capturing and image quality. Nokia says you should take bothies and not selfies – ‘bothie’ is a new camera mode on the Nokia 8 which allows you capture video and image from both rear and front cameras, at the same time, producing a split-screen for photos and videos.
Both rear and front camera are pegged at 13MP. The images produced from the combination of the two rear cameras are meant to improve low light quality, however, low light pictures has its sharpness reduced. Shooting under normal or adequate light gives a sharp crisp image.
The 13MP front camera also snaps good selfies when under good lighting conditions. This also works well when using the bothie feature.
For me, the most interesting feature on the camera is the ability to livestream directly to YouTube and facebook within the camera interface, all you need do is open up the camera app, connect it to your social media account and begin to stream to friends.
There’s also Nokia’s OZO 360 audio technology which should allow for more immersive video when recording your 4k video.
The display is a 5.3-inch QHD IPS screen with a resolution of 1440 pixels by 2560 pixels at 554 pixels per inch.
The first thing that comes to mind is whether the Quad HD is really needed in a 5.3-inch device, bearing in mind that the Quad HD features may not be fully enjoyed on a smaller screen compared to devices with an expanded real estate ranging between 5.7-6-inch fitted with Quad HD display. However the results did not disappoint, the screen boast of clear, bright and sharp display with accurate colour representation.
STORAGE AND PERFORMANCE
The Nokia 8 is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 which is found on most Android flagship device in 2017. It runs on Android 7.1.1 and powered by a 1.8GHz Octa-Core Qualcomm Snapdragon processor 835 chipset.
Internal storage is packed at 64GB and that can also be expanded up to 256GB via a microSD card.
Daily performance of the Nokia 8 is so impressive, app switching was fast and smooth without delay alongside a brilliant multi-tasking experience. The 4GB RAM simply does a good job on the Nokia 8.
The UI is near stock android, Nokia is doing away with bloatware.
I realized that the phone didn’t get hot even with extensive usage of the camera and minutes of watching videos and playing games as compared with other smartphones. Nokia included a liquid cooling system to take care of heating and also reduce battery burn out rate.
There is a 3,090mAh battery which may sound little for a flagship smartphone with Quad HD display, however I found out that the battery can last you on a whole day ride if you are a moderate user. A heavy user may just need to charge up a little towards the end of the day. Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 835 also helps to manage battery power efficiently thereby offering more battery life for the user.
There is no wireless charging for the battery but there is quick charge which allows you to charge your battery quickly in a little time.
The Nokia 8 isn’t the best phone in the market yet but it offers great features like the Quad HD display and processor alongside a fun camera feature such as bothie mode and the ability to livestream on Facebook and YouTube. So if you like a crisp sharp display on a phone, sleek design and wish to experience the fun bothie mode, the Nokia 8 is for you.