Nokia 6.1 is one of the 5 handsets launched by HMD Global this year. It is basically an updated version of the Nokia 6. It has an attractive design and it is free of unnecessary bells and whistles. With this one phone, HMD has attempted to cater to all the market segments. The phone retails for 279 euros. Those who buy it before July 31 can get it for 229 euros as they will get the Google Home Mini as a present. The real question is if the phone is worth buying. Let’s find out in our Nokia 6.1 review!
Nokia 6.1 Review
The first thing worth mentioning in the Nokia 6.1 review is its mid-range hardware. The phone is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 630 chipset. It has 3 GB of RAM and 32 GB of internal storage. For connectivity, the phone has Wifi 802.11 a / b / g / n, Bluetooth 5.0, dual-band 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz, and LTE with 150 Mbps download speeds. The phone also provides support for Dual SIM. The SIM card compartment is on the left of the phone. There are two slots. The first one is for the SIM, and the other one could either be used for the second SIM or the microSD. The connectivity is good and in line with other mid-range devices. The WiFi is also good. There are no problems while making or receiving calls. The audio is fine in the capsule but the quality of hands-free calls is excellent.
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The phone can run demanding games easily. Even though the GPU isn’t the most powerful, it still loads easily without any delays. Playing games is easy but the phone gets hot after a while. However, this is normal. Basically, the performance of the phone is much better than what the specs sheet led you to believe.
The Nokia 6.1 review is incomplete without a discussion on its design. The design is one of the highlights of the phone. In an era where most handsets look alike because of the 18:9 aspect ratio and the notch, Nokia 6.1 really is a breath of fresh air. It is a classic phone and stands out from other run-of-the-mill smartphones in the market. Nokia 6.1 has a 16: 9 display. The frames are somehow poorly optimized and are present on the top and the bottom. The back of the phone feels like satin and the front and the back edges of the phone are wrapped with copper. The copper edge also surrounds the fingerprint scanner and the camera module. The fingerprint sensor is located on the back of the phone. Even though it is a bit too low because of the vertical camera setup, it is still accessible easily. The edge is cut out and has a satin finished. It provides an excellent grip, although it is wider than most smartphones in the market in terms of the shape ratio. However, the phone is easy to hold and can be used without any problem with a single hand too. The design of the phone is classical because of the wide edges at the bottom and top and the thin edges on the sides. The Nokia logo is in the middle of the phone. Placing the fingerprint scanner back did not reduce the bezels of the Nokia 6.1. the camera of the device doesn’t stick out. The Nokia 6.1 weighs 172 grams which isn’t too heavy but feels firm when you hold it.
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Another thing worth shedding light over in our Nokia 6.1 review is its 5.5-inch screen with FullHD resolution 1920 x 1080 pixels, IPS technology and 403 PPI definition. The display panel is just fine and not one of the strengths of the device. It is covered in Gorilla Glass 3. The contrasts and blacks of the phone could have been much better. When the phone is tilted, the contrasts and colors become dark and not vivid. The brightness and definition are good but the color rendition isn’t. The screen to body ratio is 73.2%.
There is a single speaker on the lower edge of the device. The volume is good but the sound quality could have been better. It is a little too sharp and lacks bass. It gets progressively worse as you increase the volume. The audio quality of the wireless headphones has increased because of Bluetooth 5.1. The audio output via a USB type-C port is also allowed.
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The Nokia 6.1 has a single 16 MP camera with an aperture of f / 2.0. It has Carl Zeiss lenses and provides digital stabilization. The selfie camera is 8 MP. The camera department is nothing to write home about. The quality of the pictures during the day is in line with other mid-range smartphones. The lights and shadows haven’t been managed too well. In fact, some areas of some images are often burned. The definition is fine and so are the general rendering of the colors and the scene. However, there is a lack of contrast. As the light starts to dim, the yield also decreases. Because of the sensor’s shortcomings, the pictures are undefined and blurred at night time. Apart from that, the noise also increased as the ISOs are kept high.
To sum it up, the camera of the Nokia 6.1 is not bad for unpretentious use, but it doesn’t take impressive pictures. There are other smartphones in the market in the same price range that do a better job. The same also applies to video but the well-established stabilization makes videos a little better than the pictures.
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Another thing worth mentioning in the Nokia 6.1 review is its 3000 mAh battery. It lasts till the evening and provides 5 hours of active display. The standby power consumption is almost zero because of the Android stock software. The phone is very reliable in this regard, unlike most other smartphones in the market. The phone also supports Qualcomm’s fast-charging which tops up the phone 50% in around 30 minutes.
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Nokia 6.1 is a part of the Android One project. This means that users will get fast updates for 2 years at least, along with updated security patches. The Android stock is in Oreo 8.1 version. If you do not like the customization made by producers, there isn’t much to say about the software of the Nokia 6.1. It is particularly interesting to see it on a mid-range smartphone that doesn’t really have a high-performance hardware.
HMD Global has also made some additions. For instance, the camera can be opened with a gesture. Similarly, there are gestures for putting the phone on silent, opening the notification pane; with the fingerprint, and some other options. The camera app has also been modified a little to harness the hardware available.
Nokia 6.1 Review: Verdict
Nokia 6.1 is a great smartphone by HMD. The price is also very attractive. It retails for 279 euros but those who by it before the end of July will get a free Google Home Mini, saving 50 euros. Sounds like a good deal.
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One of the best thing about Nokia 6.1 is that it is a part of the Android One program that guarantees regular updates as well as more security. The phone’s display is also really good. The battery life is also impressive. Two things that are worth mentioning in the Nokia 6.1 review is that the headphone jack has been retained and the phone does not have a notch. The phone is a bit too wide, which can be a put off for some people. The fingerprint sensor has also been placed too low, even though it is still accessible. Sometimes the camera gets slow. Overall, HMD Global has done a good job with the Nokia 6.1. The phone is available in three colors: black, white and blue.
The upgraded version of the Nokia 6 is pleasantly surprising. It is more powerful and has 1 GB extra RAM. It is also a part of the Android One program and ships with Android Oreo. All these things make the new version very compelling. Nokia 6.1 is also faster than the Nokia 6 and good at multitasking. The only things that could have been changed are the width and the position of the fingerprint sensor. For a mid-range device, it is actually a pretty good phone and the price makes it even more attractive.
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