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Nokia 6.1 Unboxing and First Impressions

Huawei
The Nokia 6.1 was launched months ago with a lot of hype because of the large display with Snapdragon 630, 4GB RAM, 64GB ROM, and ZEISS camera optics.
Nokia 6.1 Unboxing and First Impressions
The Nokia 6.1!

It is priced at PHP 15,990 and could be a huge value for Nokia fans out there.

Here is part one of our Nokia 6.1 review.

Nokia 6.1 Specs

Display: 5.5-inch 2.5D curved Gorilla Glass 3 protected IPS screen w/ FHD 1920 x 1080 resolution at 401 ppi
CPU: 2.2GHz 64-bit Snapdragon 630 octa-core processor
GPU: Adreno 508
RAM: 4GB
ROM: 64GB expandable via microSD card slot up to 128GB
Back Camera: 16MP f/2.0 ZEISS optics w/ PDAF and dual tone LED flash
Selfie Camera: 8MP f/2.0 w/ 84-degree wide-angle
Battery: 3,000mAh w/ fast charging
OS: Android 8.0 Oreo
Connectivity: WiFi 802.11 ac, 4G LTE Cat 4, Bluetooth 5.0, BLE, aptX, GPS, A-GPS, GLONASS, BDS, dual SIM (hybrid)
Sensors: Accelerometer, light, orientation, proximity, gyroscope, sound, magnetic
Others: Fingerprint sensor, USB Type-C, dual mic, Colors: black copper, blue gold, white iron
Dimensions: 148.8 x 75.8 x 8.6 mm
Price: PHP 15,990

Unboxing/Accessories

Unboxing!

It include a 5V/3A, 9V/2A or 12V/1.5A USB wall charger, USB Type-A to USB Type-C data/charging cable, documentation, SIM ejector tool and earphones.

My one nitpick is that the box has a glossy texture that doesn't feel good when touched. It made the unboxing a little more uncomfortable than it needed to be. It would be great if they went with a matte textured paper for the box and dividers.

Build Quality/Design

Glimmering gold accents!

The Nokia 6.1 is one of the most beautiful phones we've seen in its price range. The unibody aluminum body has this premium texture that feels good in the hands. We also like that its display is protected with a layer of an unspecified version of Corning Gorilla Glass.

The Nokia 6.1 is one of the most beautiful phones we've seen in its price range!

The sharp corners are there for the chamfered edges that have a contrasting rose gold color that glistens beautifully that gives the phone its character. Our one gripe is the sharp corners that prick at you the longer you hold your phone.
Headphone jack and antenna line
Headphone jack and antenna line
Speaker, microphone and USB Type-C port
Speaker, microphone and USB Type-C port
SIM card tray
SIM card tray
Volume rocker and power button
Volume rocker and power button

On top is the 3.5 mm headphone jack and an antenna line while at the bottom is the USB Type-C.

At the right side is the volume rocker and the power button while the sim card tray is at the left side.

The front is a 2.5D glass panel that covers most of the front with nearly no side bezels. The top and chin bezels however are larger than most phones at this price point today.

The bottom bezels is empty while the top has the earpiece, sensors, front facing camera and the Nokia branding.

At the back is the 12MP ZEISS optics main camera with a dual tone LED flash. Below it is the fingerprint scanner. Near the edge is the Android One branding along with regulatory information.

After we set our fingerprints as the primary way of unlocking the phone it was immediately apparent that even with our small hands/short fingers we were always tapping the dual tone LED flash instead of the fingerprint sensor. For the size of our hands, the fingerprint scanner is placed too low.

The phone feels good and is easy to hold until you've held it for longer periods because of the sharp corners. It isn't as slippery as glass backed phones but it feels like it will slip even when held securely. We recommend getting a case right away.

Initial findings

The benchmark scores
The benchmark scores

1. The Nokia 6.1 is a stunningly designed device physically but has some functional flaws in design like the fingerprint scanner placement and the sharp corners. Otherwise, the bright, vibrant 5.5-inch 2.5D curved Gorilla Glass FHD IPS display is beautiful but may set off bezel lovers with the larger chin and top bezels.

2. Upon announcement, the Nokia 6.1 was of great value for the price but with the Pocophone F1 and Huawei Honor Play, the processor and memory may turn some people away but for the build quality.

It has the 2.2GHz 64-bit Snapdragon 630 octa-core processor and Adreno 508 with 4GB RAM and 64GB ROM. It is expandable via microSD card slot up to 256GB.

It has a respectable 3,000mAh battery that Nokia says is large enough to power the phone for an extended period.

3. It loads with Android 8.0 Oreo and is one of Nokia's Android One phones that means it runs stock Android with access to a consistent Google Experience that the company set software and hardware specifications. 

4. It has a 16MP f/2.0 RGB sensor with PDAF, EIS, and LED flash for the rear camera while the selfie camera is also a 16MP f/2.0. It has the pro mode that Nokia popularised in the early 2010s. 

Aside from the stunning ZEISS image quality out of the box is a mode unique to it. It is Dual and Picture In Picture mode where in it uses both rear and front camera to split the image from both sensors that adds another layer of functionality.

5. The 6.1 has no LED notification. But, it has OTG, gyroscope, light, orientation and proximity sensors. It supports LTE, Bluetooth 4.2, GPS, and GLONASS.

As of the moment

The Nokia 6.1 is a compelling device for the price though it now has stiff competition from the newer mid-range smartphones.

The camera out of the box is very good. ZEISS really does make some of the best cameras for phones now. It is noticeably sharp with good contrast and vibrant colors. We have to make more tests though.

Lastly, the physical design is beautiful but it could improve in some ergonomics and functionality as well.

We'll have to spend more time with the Nokia 6.1 but so far, quite good.
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