We had the chance to see and manage the Nothing phone (1), one of the most anticipated phones this summer. Prints.
Carl Pei, iconic co-founder of OnePlus, launched his new high-tech brand in January 2021: None. It may be nothing, but a year and a half later, the first phone from the company is expected to have a great deal of impatience from technophiles. The hype is high, but will its product survive? We saw Nothing phone (1) – new formally – for an hour and here’s our opinion on the matter.
A unique design
From the first contact, the most surprising is its obvious design. If in its forms it has flat edges, it is reminiscent of the latest iPhones, the transparent shell on the back gives it an undoubtedly unique visual aspect … and is particularly successful. Especially with its white color which allows to better understand all the details of this design.
And the details, there is a lot to discover. Among the littlenothing»On the edge, the different textures of the plates visible through transparency, or even in the shape of an elephant in the lower right, everyone is thinking of making a lot of a game of tracks like wonder. Of course, all this intricacy is not immediately understood by everyone, the viewer being attracted by the LEDs all over the curves and in straight lines, reminiscent of the geoglyphs of Nazca. In fact, the outcome appears to be very successful and we can only appreciate taking the risk.
On the grip side, we also don’t complain. With over 190 grams on the scales, the Nothing phone (1) is less heavy and it’s good in the hand. Not everyone appreciates the straight edges, but we can’t deny that they ensure excellent stability for the phone, between our fingers and placed vertically on a table. However, horizontally, note that its photo module is raised enough to make it shake on tapping on its keyboard. A very common defect for very good unique use.
From a very personal point of view, I have to confess that I regret not finding alert slider this little switch which is available on OnePlus and Apple which allows you to instantly switch from vibrate mode to silent or ringtone mode and vice versa. Maybe for the next return?
What we found, however, was a beautiful screen on the front. This is a flexible Oled panel that allows Left to integrate a uniform outline, which is still very unique. On paper, there isn’t much envy at all: Full HD+, 120 Hz, 1200 cd/m², HDR10+, Gorilla Glass 5 … Everything is there and, to the eye, no one is to blame for him. We will have to wait for our full test and a passage under our review to prove what the cost really is.
A basic interface
Running on Android 12 and a home interface, the Nothing phone (1) never changes any of its software features other than its brilliant glyph. We should be content here at the very least. The parts are small and not always well organized, but the requirements are there. So we’re far from the Oxygen OS (the OnePlus interface), but it remains pleasing, especially since there are still some good ideas, like highlighting Bluetooth-connected devices for example to make it easier to manage from quick settings menu, or the use of the brand font.
In addition, Nobody wants to create a real ecosystem, with its own products of course, but also other famous brands. The Nothing phone (1) will therefore integrate Tesla’s APIs in beta when it is released, and those with AirPods Pro in the future to facilitate interactions with these products.
Nothing phone quick settings (1) // Source: Robin Wycke – Fandroid
Left font in phone settings (1) // Source: Robin Wycke – Fandroid
This minimalism above all wants to leave room for a new way of using your smartphone. “We want to minimize screen interactions“, admitted a spokesperson for the brand. With Flip to Glyph, all you have to do is flip your phone to receive more information through the LEDs. In particular, you can choose different flashes for per contact or group of contacts, or even to look at simplydouble tapthe battery level when charging. Good idea, to see in the long term if more than a simple gimmick.
Despite our first tests of a beta version, the interface seems fluid despite its mid-range configuration. Keep in mind that on board we found a Snapdragon 778G and 8 to 12 GB of RAM (8 GB in the version we had on hand).
A young company, Nobody wanted to show off its credentials from the start and showed a lot of ecological ambitions in an industry that was a lot of dirt. If it doesn’t go to Fairphone’s commitments, the small London company has announced it will stop buying carbon credits, seeking to invest in what matters. The packaging of the phone (1) is so pure, its frame is made of 100% recycled aluminum and 50% of the plastic components of the phone are also recycled. Unfortunately, it is difficult to obtain recycled materials on a large scale, which complicates the company’s intentions to continue its approach.
A price to be paid
A unique design and ecological ambitions, as we know, it comes at a cost. Starting at 469 euros, the Nothing phone (1) is more expensive than a phone with a similar technical data sheet. Apparently there are some that are not known in balance, such as its autonomy or the quality of its photographs for example. No one integrates two 50 Mpx sensors (wide-angle and ultra-wide-angle), refusing to add unnecessary sensors just to increase the number of lines on the technical sheet and the final price . We can only applaud that step.
At first glance, the Nothing phone (1) seems interested in requirements and design, and in adding little novelties that will please the most tech-savvy people who aren’t afraid to pay a little for it.