Nokia 3 hands-on first look: can it compete with Moto G and Xiaomi?

The Nokia 3 is a dirt cheap 5-inch Android phone with clean software and the added spice of a sturdy build quality.

What's special about it you ask? It's all about the price: the Nokia 3 is cheaper than the Moto G4 and G5, it's even cheaper than the popular in Asia and in some parts of Europe Xiaomi Redmi phones. We spent a short time with this new Nokia, but it was enough to appreciate its metal frame, notice its otherwise plastic build and the weird auto-focus selfie camera. We did not expect much and if you approach the Nokia 3 with similar expectations you might even like it.

Okay, so what do we have here? The Nokia 3 is a 5-inch phone with an 720 x 1280 pixel HD resolution, and a base quad-core MediaTek system chip. In our short time with the device, this proved to be a decent combination in daily tasks which ran well, but you can't expect the phone to do great with more intense applications.

There is 16GB of storage on board, which given the ultra affordable price is actually okay. You also have a microSD card slot and with it, the option to expand that storage to save more of your photos, videos and offline music.

We're also happy to see 4G LTE connectivity on the Nokia 3. The bands will be limited to the markets that it will be available in, and we expect it to launch in Europe.

There is nothing remarkable on the camera front: an 8MP shooter on the back, and an 8-megapixel selfie camera. We should say that unlike most fixed focus cameras, the selfie camera on the Nokia 3 is an auto-focus one, which gives you a bit creamer backgrounds and is nice to have.

Overall, the Nokia 3 shapes up to be a very good affordable phone. It is made to last with a sturdy build quality, and while it lacks in premium features, its price makes up for most of these flaws. If Nokia indeed delivers timely Android updates to this one, it might just be better than all the other cheap Androids out there.

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Nokia at MWC 2017 (11 updates)

Related phones

  • Display 5.0" 720 x 1280 pixels
  • Camera 8 MP / 8 MP front
  • Processor MediaTek, Quad-core, 1300 MHz
  • Storage 16 GB + microSDXC
  • Battery 2650 mAh



1. nokia12

Posts: 610; Member since: Nov 19, 2013

Instead of giving NFC it would have been much better if they went with SD 425 instead of Mediatek ..

3. sgodsell

Posts: 7605; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

The G5's have full HD displays and Snapdragon processors. That is a major reason why the G5 starts at $199. You couldn't pay me enough to use a crappy mediatek processor again.

4. yalokiy

Posts: 1116; Member since: Aug 01, 2016

For ordinary users without need of custom roms there is no difference, as nokia promised regular updates..

2. SleeperOne

Posts: 370; Member since: Feb 25, 2017

...My god, Nokia Lumia meets Android. This phone is sex wrapped in good memories and previously sour grapes (Never got a chance to use a 700 Series Lumia).

5. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

- MotoG have much better camera, and only slightly more expensive - xiaomi RN3pro, no contest at all, RN3pro win in all aspects

7. sgodsell

Posts: 7605; Member since: Mar 16, 2013

What the hell are you talking about? The Moto G5 has a full HD (1920x1080) display, vs the Nokia 3's HD (1280x720) display. The G5 has a 13 MP camera, and a SD 430 SoC.

6. peace247 unregistered

I don't Why Nokia is getting so much attention.... They are overpriced , way underpowered. Moto g and Xiaomi way better

8. tech_mate

Posts: 23; Member since: Nov 30, 2016

Was hoping that Nokia will break the shackles but these are really high price-low power phones. Expected much better than this. Really disappointed.

9. Spedez

Posts: 542; Member since: Aug 29, 2014

Very nice. It redefines the budget class.

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