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Nokia kicks off MWC with five new handsets, led by the Nokia 8 Sirocco

Alan Martin
25 Feb 2018
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Four smartphones and a feature phone

This time last year, Nokia seemed to be making up for lost time at MWC. Revealing no fewer than four mobile phones, this was a statement of intent. The Finnish giants were back. And having sold more smartphones than OnePlus, Google and HTC in Q4 last year, Nokia is not resting on its laurels, announcing an additional five this time around.

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Launching in April, the flagship is the Nokia 8 Sirocco: a 7.5mm thin blend of metal and glass loveliness. It’s definitely worth keeping an eye on, and on paper seems to be keeping up with rival devices, with a large 5.5in, 2K, 18:9, OLED display; wireless charging; and IP67 protection offering protection against water and dust.

There is a fly in the ointment though: despite its €749 (~£660) pricetag, it’s powered by last year’s Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor. It’s no slouch, but with the 845 due to feature in this year’s top devices, it might be worth seeing exactly how much of an upgrade it offers. Still, 6GB RAM should ensure it provides a smooth Android experience, all the same.

If that seems a bit pricey, Nokia hopes you’ll give the Nokia 7 Plus a look. As the name suggests,it’s a big device, with a 6in Full HD+ 18:9 screen. Coming in April at €399 (~£350), it’s quite a drop from the Sirocco, and has specifications to match, using the Snapdragon 660 processor, backed with 4GB RAM. Despite this, it includes nice-to-have features like face unlocking and – yes – a 3.5mm headphone jack.

The next handset out the blocks is a new version of the Nokia 6 handset we had a look at last year. While last year’s lower midrange handset was powered by the 1.1GHz octa-core Snapdragon 430, this year’s remix comes with the more powerful Snapdragon 630 – something the company estimates will give it an 80% boost over the last outing. The rest is quite familiar: Full HD, an all-metal chassis, and versions available with 3GB or 4GB RAM, starting at €279 (~£245) and shipping in April.

The cheapest way to get a Nokia smartphone comes with the Nokia 1 – something the company views as a transition handset to switch you from feature phone to smartphone – especially in emerging markets. To that end it uses Android Go – the cut-down version of Android designed to run on systems with 1GB RAM or lower – and promises a pure Android experience with monthly security updates. It also ships in April for $85 (~£61).

Finally, there’s the Nokia 8110 feature phone – herein referred to as the “banana phone” for reasons that should be immediately obvious if you glance at the picture below.

Launching in May with a price of €79 (~£69), the banana phone is designed for people who need long battery life, plenty of talk time and – yes – Snake. Unlike last year’s revival of the Nokia 3310, the banana phone comes with 4G.

What use is that on a feature phone, you might ask. Well, alongside having support for simple apps (Facebook will be included at launch), you can use the banana phone as a hotspot – though the legendary battery life will presumably drop considerably from the 20 days standby if you hammer this particular feature.

With the handsets launching in April and May, we’ll hopefully have some full reviews soon.

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