Nokia 8 is HMD Global’s flagship smartphone. The Android-powered smartphone has a 5.3-inch Quad HD IPS LCD display. Nokia 8 offers ZEISS-powered dual-cameras at the back; primary 13MP rear camera with optical image stabilisation and another 13MP secondary (black and white) sensor. At the front too, there’s a 13MP camera. One of the key highlights of the smartphone is the Bothie mode. This is a primarily dual-camera mode that allows users to take both pictures and videos using its front and back cameras simultaneously. Nokia 8 comes with Ozo audio technology that uses three microphones to capture 360-degree sound. The smartphone is powered by Qualcomm’s top-end processor Snapdragon 835 and Andreno 540 GPU. It has 64GB internal storage, expandable up to 256GB via microSD card. There’s 3090mAh battery with Quick Charge 3.0 support. Connectivity options include Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, GPS/AGPS, GLONASS, Bluetooth 5.0, NFC and 4G LTE. The phone comes in four colour options — Matte Silver, Polished Blue, Matte Blue and Polished Copper.
HMD Global has had an eventful year and made its power-packed entry into the Indian smartphone market with the launch of three Nokia powered smartphone. But the true test of its credentials was always going to be its flagship smartphone – Nokia 8. Priced at Rs 35,999, the smartphone has all the essential features of a flagship and it also looks pretty good. Will it help Nokia to regain its lost crown and bring back the glory days? We try to find out in our review as we used the Nokia 8 for quite some time and here is our word about the smartphone.
Design and display
Nokia 8 is the flagship smartphone from HMD and looking at its design it truly represents one. The smartphone comes with classic aluminium and glass body design. The device comes with a matte finished smooth rear panel with curved edges. The top and bottom consists of the antenna lines covered with plastic. The front of the smartphone is dominated by a 5.3-inch display, Nokia logo, 13MP selfie camera, two capacitive keys and a pill shaped fingerprint sensor which also doubles up as the home button. The SIM card slot is placed on the left side, while the power button and volume rockers are located on the right. The 3.5mm audio jack is there on the top, whereas the USB type C charging slot and speaker grill are placed at the bottom.
The rear of the smartphone houses the dual rear camera setup placed vertically surrounded by a metal rim and Zeiss and Nokia branding. Nokia 8 comes as a refreshing change in terms of design as it offers something fresh and new. While the OnePlus 5 is Nokia 8’s closest competitor, HMD’s flagship scores over the Chinese manufacturer. Nokia 8 has its unique form factor unlike OnePlus 5, which has borrowed its design aesthetics from Apple iPhone. The smartphone is also light in weight and is pretty sleek. The smartphone comes with IP54 rating which makes its dust and slash resistant. In a nutshell, the Nokia 8 has an impressive design which gives premium look and feel of a flagship.
Nokia 8 features a 5.3-inch QHD display with 1440×2560 pixels resolution and 16:9 aspect ratio. The display is protected with a layer of Corning Gorilla Glass 5 on top to protect it from scratches. The display is impressive and offers quite bright and crisp colour reproduction. Again comparing to the OnePlus 5, the Nokia 8 excels in terms of display as well. The OnePlus 5 offers a full HD display while the Nokia 8 comes with a QHD display. When used in direct sunlight the smartphone offered pretty good visibility whereas the OnePlus 5 has a very reflective display. The smartphone also has a Glance screen which offers information like time, date, battery life, missed calls, messages and emails. The screen has a tap to wake up feature which can be enabled from Settings. The smartphone scores well in the display department.
Performance and camera
Nokia 8 is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor paired with 4GB of RAM. The smartphone has the latest processor like all other flagships of this year. The processor is one of the highlights of the smartphone and it makes the performance pretty smooth. It handles everything from multi-tasking to app switching to playing graphic rich games with great ease. There weren’t any heating issues with the smartphone which is always a good sign. We ran multiple benchmark tests on the smartphone and it scored 176674 in the Antutu test and 2005 and 6293 in Geekbench single core and multi core tests respectively. The smartphone comes with 64GB of internal storage and if users run out of space then they can also install a microSD card of up to 256GB.
The smartphone is backed by 3090mAh battery and comes with Qualcomm Quick Charging support. The battery easily lasts up to a day also charges pretty quickly. The audio quality was reasonably good on both headphones and loudspeaker. We also didn’t face any major issues with the call quality or signal reception.
Coming to the software, Nokia 8 runs Android 7.1 Nougat operating system and will soon receive Android 8.0 Oreo update. It offers a pure stock Android experience and doesn’t come with any bloatware. All the much-needed Google apps are placed on the left side of the home screen and users have to long press the home button to access Google Assistant. If you like the stock Android feel, you’ll certainly love what Nokia 8 has to offer in terms of interface. There are no unnecessary apps which clutter both storage and the home screen. It offers all the standard features of Nougat. In terms of software, there isn’t anything unique to Nokia 8 as it offers everything any other stock Android phone does.
Nokia 8 is the first Nokia smartphone to come with a dual rear camera setup and that too powered by Carl Zeiss optics. The smartphone comes with a two 13MP cameras placed in the vertical position on the real panel with dual tone LED flash. The rear camera consists to both an RGB and monochrome sensor which claim to offer great results during low light photography. Users also have the option to shoot with one lens if they want to. The camera app is quite different as compared to the other smartphones. The top bar of the camera app consists of the Settings button and five other options. There is a dual camera button which hides three other options of shooting in colour, monochrome and twin. Then there is another button under which you will find your front camera and the bothie feature. Next to that is a timer, HDR mode and flash. The bottom bar has the shutter button and the option to switch between videos and photo. The shots taken using Nokia 8 turned out pretty good and we also liked the colour reproduction and detailing. The bokeh effect was also good. The images taken outdoors were slightly better than the shots captured indoors. There’s also a 13MP front camera which offered decent selfies. The other main highlight of the camera is its dual sight mode or the bothie feature, which allows the users take shot using the front and rear camera at the same time. We personally liked the feature as it is new and is not found in any other smartphone. Overall, Nokia 8’s camera is satisfying and it also offers good results.
Nokia 8 comes with a price tag of Rs 35,999 and it offers all the high-end features and specifications that a flagship should have. It has the latest processor, dual camera setup, fast charging and an impressive metal body design. It also performs well and is a value-f or- money smartphone. If you are willing to spend above Rs 35,000 then you can definitely consider buying a Nokia 8. Those looking for alternatives can go for the OnePlus 5 which is also available at a similar price tag.