Nokia 6 hands-on: it's not here just to tickle your nostalgia

Earlier this year, HMD Global announced its first Nokia-branded phone — the Nokia 6. Available only in China, the handset had fans of the Finnish phone-maker drooling from afar, never able to get to it. Well, at MWC 2017, it was announced that the new 6 is now going global. And we got some hands-on time with it!


The Nokia 6 may be a midranger, but that doesn't mean it can't look nice. The metal-made handset sports a new, shiny black dress of clothes — a finish called Arte Black —, just in time for its global release. It feels very nice in the hand, though we would say that it's a smidgen larger than ideal, and its edges are something that one would have to get used to, and it's an adept at collecting fingerprints. In case that's an issue, HDM is launching quite a lot of cases to go with the new Nokia 6, including a transparent one.

The hardware controls we have here are a power button and volume rocker set along the right frame of the device. They feel stable, with a nice click to them. The home button on the front is a capacitive slab with a fingerprint scanner embedded underneath it. Its surrounded by two backlit capacitive navigation keys for back and recent apps.

Hardware and software

The Nokia 6 is a humble midranger at heart — with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 beating in its chest. It still has a nice, large, 5.5-inch display with a 1080 x 1920 pixel resolution stretched across, though. We weren't able to test it under the open skies, but HMD claims that the phone features a special Sunlight Readability feature, to make the display visible under bright light.

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As previously mentioned, the Nokia 6 gets a new, special finish for its global release. It's called Arte Black and is considered a limited edition. These shiny phones will also have slightly updated internals — 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB of internal storage. Any of the other versions get 3 GB of RAM and 32 GB of space. Whichever one you get, you will still have a microSD card slot for storage expansion up to 128 GB.

The phone runs Android 7 Nougat, pretty close to stock. We'd say that performance was pleasingly snappy, no doubt thanks to the fact that HMD Global didn't go crazy with re-skinning and features. We were pleasantly surprised to find out that all three of the newly-announced Nokia phones will have the Google Assistant on board.

As for cameras, we have a 16 MP snapper with phase detection autofocus, a lens aperture of F2.0, and a dual-tone flash on the back, and a generous 8 MP snapper for selfies on the front.

Price and expectations

The Nokia 6 will have a starting price of €229 (around $241) for the regular models, and €299 ($315) for the Arte Black special edition. We have to say that it is a really pretty midranger, but for that price, it will feel extremely pressured by Lenovo's excellent Moto G5 Plus, priced at $229.

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