Although it’s difficult to see any company releasing its first smartphone producing the same level of buzz as Nothing has for the Phone (1), excitement may have both positive and negative effects.
Although the flow of teasers undoubtedly increased interest and expectation, and the 100,000+ individuals who joined the queue to purchase the phone show that it worked, has it placed unreasonably high demands on a product that is, at its core, just a phone?
Nothing Phone 1 full specifications
|Screen||6.55in, 2400×1080 flexible OLED w/ 120Hz refresh rate, HDR10+|
|CPU||Qualcomm Snapdragon 778G+ octa-core|
|Cameras||50MP, f/1.9 main w/ phase-detect autofocus, OIS, EIS + 50MP, f/2.2 ultrawide w/ EIS.|
16MP, f/2.5 front
|Operating System||Android 12 w/ NothingOS|
|Battery||4500mAh non-removable w/ 33W wired, 15W wireless charging, 5W reverse charging|
Design & build
You’re not the only one who thinks the metal frame and flat glass have significant iPhone 13 vibes. The Phone 1 just has a hole punch front camera instead of a notch, but it nevertheless looks and feels like Apple’s most expensive smartphones from the front and sides. It also has a really high-end feel in your hands.
The under-display fingerprint sensor is a little too close to the phone’s bottom for our liking, but it is quick to recognise your digits. However, the glass is an issue because it is prone to picking up streaks and smudges from fingerprints in general.
Nothing Phone 1 Dual Cameras
Nothing Phone 1 deserves praise for not overusing its rear cameras as many of its budget rivals do. Here, there are only two competent lenses, each with a 50MP sensor. There is no subpar macro or useless depth sensor. Only the main camera has optical picture stabilisation, however both the main and ultrawide have electronic image stabilisation.
Interestingly, in well-lit situations, both sensors can take excellent pictures. The exposure and image sharpness are both perfect, and only extremely busy textures, like bushes or grass, start to lose fine detail.
The ultrawide lens, which has a 114-degree field of view, makes it more obvious. Additionally, this struggles more than the primary camera does with exposure and white balance, which can lead to slightly darker photographs.
You can choose between shooting in 1080p at 60 frames per second, which is quite normal for this price, or 4K at 30 frames per second. We adore the play/pause button since it allows you to pause and resume recording your video without cutting it into separate chunks. For Instagram Stories and Tiktok, it’s kind of a game-changer.
Screen & sound
While appealing to the eye, perfectly symmetrical screen bezels are challenging to achieve. Nothing Phone 1 could have accomplished the task without a flexible OLED panel, which is often only found on pricey foldable phones. Even though those bezels are a tad on the thick side, Phone 1 looks undoubtedly slick, so the effort was worthwhile.
Overall, the underlying panel is a solid one. You will receive a 6.55-inch display with a resolution of 2400 x 1080 pixels, HDR10+ playback compatibility, and a maximum brightness of 1200 nits.
As expected with AMOLED technology, it produces vivid, clear visuals with great contrast, with HDR content in particular having a noticeable visual impact. Even outside, everything is simple enough to read.
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Battery life of Nothing Phone 1
Nothing Phone 1’s battery capacity is 4500mAh, which isn’t the largest among low-cost competitors. Additionally, those lack sophisticated LED lighting systems that require power. But while using the camera app, you can simply force the lights on continuously, and it didn’t seem to drain any more quickly than when they were off.
Nothing guarantees that each charge will provide you “18 hours of use,” which we think is a touch optimistic. We discovered that even for daily tasks, it would start to go negative by early evening. Expect to need to plug in even sooner if you’re doing more than simply looking around social media, taking pictures, and listening to music. Gaming also consumes energy quickly.
Performance & software
Mid-range power and mid-range price make sense together. Nothing Phone 1 went crazy when choosing a premium CPU for its debut phone, which reduced prices. But that doesn’t mean the Snapdragon 778G+ is a dud. Even more changes were made specifically for the Phone 1 by Qualcomm, including support for wireless and reverse wireless charging.
Android 12 runs smoothly on Nothing Phone 1, opening apps quickly, and animating without any obvious hiccups. If you compare it to a flagship phone, you’ll see where it falls short, but if you’re not fixated on benchmark results, there’s not a lot there.
On our review machine, which had 8GB of RAM, multitasking mostly went without a hitch; the only time it required a redraw was when switching between many resource-intensive apps. Although we haven’t had a chance to test the more expensive 12GB version to make sure, it should be even more smooth in that regard.
In the case of gaming, expectations need to be managed. The most taxing Google Play Store games, such as Diablo Immortal and Genshin Impact, will run smoothly on the Phone 1, but you’ll need to reduce the detail settings to get decent frame rates. The Google Pixel 6a should have no trouble achieving 60 frames per second in Diablo because it shares a chipset with the more expensive Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro.