Finnish company HMD Global launched Nokia 6 last year with a good design — but its internals left users craving for more.
The company, which got the licence in 2016 to sell Nokia-branded devices and displayed its first line-up last year, has now launched a refreshed iteration of Nokia 6 that runs the “Android One” platform — the unmodified Android operating system (OS) with a promise of improved security through frequent updates.
Android One primarily focused on entry-level devices for emerging markets, including India, but later evolved into Google’s key mobile programme.
At Rs. 16,999 for 3GB RAM and 32GB on-board storage, Nokia 6 (2018) competes with the likes of Xiaomi Redmi Note 5 Pro and Honor 9 Lite.
Here is what we think of the new Nokia 6.
Carved from a single block of 6,000-series aluminium and the two-tone anodisation (a process used for the surface treatment of aluminium), this device is a classic Nokia.
The design does not scream for attention — though the slightly curved rear impresses — and the sturdy build would make sure the device can handle a few falls.
The 16MP primary camera now comes with Zeiss optics and the black-coloured variant with copper trimmings on the side, as well as the camera module and the fingerprint scanner, give the device a stylish edge over its rivals.
Despite the sturdy built, the device was not heavy to hold, thus making it ergonomic as well.
The subtle antenna bands running on the top and bottom of the smartphone looked good.
Unlike last year’s iteration, the new Nokia 6 comes with upgraded specifications, such as a newer octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 chipset which also powers the pricier Moto X4.
Performance was smooth and we did not notice any significant stutter while running several apps, browsing videos and chatting on social media apps simultaneously.
The 16MP primary camera produced crisp and well-balanced shots during the review. The images were neither too washed out nor looked over-saturated.
The 8MP wide-angle front shooter also produced decent images.
HMD Global has not heavily customised the camera software, adding what it calls a “bothie Mode” which we first saw on last year’s Nokia 8.
The “bothie” feature essentially activates both the front and rear shooters to capture images or videos simultaneously.
A 3,000mAh battery fuels the smartphone and it was good to see it supporting fast-charging technology and a USB-Type C port.
What does not work?
Despite being launched in 2018, the device comes with the traditional aspect ratio of 16:9 which is likely to put off many users as new smartphones in the similar price range have moved on to the 18:9 aspect ratio.
We also found the device heating up on a few occasions, including gaming.
The primary camera showed lag while processing images on a few occasions.
Conclusion: Capable hardware coupled with pure and clean Android and a good overall experience makes the 2018 Nokia 6 a competent and a stylish smartphone in this price segment.