Could the Nothing Phone 2a blow the Pixel 8a and Galaxy A55 out of the water?

Nothing Phone 2a reaction post
The Nothing Phone 2a has been in the headlines recently, with the most recent story giving us glimpses of its hot looks. Set to probably sport a mid-range price tag, the device is in an ideal position to take on the likes of the yet-unannounced Galaxy A55 and Pixel 8a.

Will the Nothing Phone 2a be able to gain a notable place among these well-known phones? Or will it even be able to kick them out of their otherwise secure job positions? Let's discuss it!

Before we dive in though, it's important to mention that these three phones are not announced yet, so the info we have comes from rumors, hidden in the corners of the internet, and leaks.

Nothing Phone 2a getting its Glyphs ready: facing the Galaxy A55 and Pixel 8a for design points

In recent years, phone designs (including mid-range but also flagship phones) have suffered from what I call "a design brotherhood" - all designs look very similar and exciting design changes are... well, missing. 

*Renders of A55 courtesy of @evleaks on X, Pixel 8a renders courtesy of OnLeaks and SmartPrix

Yep, we do have small brand-specific aspects of the design to shake things up. Little differences in camera island looks, little shifts in the hue of the main color... but nothing dramatic, nothing that gets people interested in the device you're holding in your hand.

Did I just say nothing? Well, we do have something from Nothing... (these puns are just irresistible). But let's get serious. Nothing's got it in itself to carry the burden of bringing something energizing to the market. The phone maker is offering a new look for phones with its slightly sci-fi back design that definitely make it stand out from the competition.

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*Renders of the Nothing Phone 2a from OnLeaks and SmartPrix

I mean, even in black, that phone's a looker!

The speed games: can the Nothing Phone 2a take down the Pixels and Galaxies?

Phones are not just looks though. They're devices, after all, and ones that we're using every day (for like 100+ times a day). So, they need to perform. Let's talk about it.

First off, we have the Galaxy A55 with its rumored chip - the Exynos 1480 -  which was spotted earlier on Geekbench, delivering the following results:

On the other hand, we have the contender from Google, the Pixel 8a. Rumors point it will sport a Tensor G3 chipset, the one that currently keeps the Pixel 8 series going, but an underclocked version of it:

And then comes our main character. In an interview with Digital Trends, Nothing's Carl Pei revealed that the Phone 2a will sport a custom-made Dimensity 7200 Pro chipset, manufactured on a 4nm process. The new chip will allegedly offer an 18% boost in performance over the Phone 1 (with Snapdragon 778G+) with 16% less power consumption. 

All in all, expect to see the Nothing Phone 2a's performance some place between the Phone 1 and 2:
Geekbench 6
SingleHigher is better
Nothing Phone(1)1035
Google Pixel 7a1437
Nothing Phone(2)1658
Samsung Galaxy A54 5G994
Geekbench 6
MultiHigher is better
Nothing Phone(1)2933
Google Pixel 7a3461
Nothing Phone(2)4358
Samsung Galaxy A54 5G2765
*We've added the Galaxy A54's results in this table for more context. The A55 will reportedly be better, as you can see above. The Pixel 7a is also here for reference.

Here's how things look with the Geekbench results:
  • Pixel 8a (allegedly): single core: 1218(wonder why?) vs 1437 on Pixel 7a, multi: 3175 vs 3461 on Pixel 7a.
  • Galaxy A55(allegedly): single core: 1180 vs 994 on A54, multi: 3536 vs 2765 on A54.
  • Nothing Phone 2a: we don't have concrete results yet, but expect 18% better performance than Phone 1 (single 1035, multi 2933)

Of course, Geekbench results, numbers, and percentages don't always reflect the real-life experience with a device. Software optimizations are also key when we're talking performance. In the same interview, Carl Pei mentions a couple of software optimizations that the company used to optimize performance. One example is Smart Clean which helps boost read/write speeds after prolonged usage.

All this comes to say that it's quite possible the Nothing Phone 2a will be a very capable device. If Nothing does things right, it may be just as capable as the A55 or the Pixel 8a. Once released, we'll test those phones and we'll know for sure.

Last but not (definitely, not at all) least: price

Price is, understandably, one of the main motivations for why people go for midrangers: you probably don't feel like spending more than 1k on a phone. And if the Nothing Phone 2a is able to undercut the competition here, while offering the promised great performance and gorgeous design, we may have a winner.

As we already mentioned though, none of these three phones have been released yet, so they don't have official pricing. So here's what we have from leaks and rumors.

The expected price for the Galaxy A55 is the same as the one its predecessor came in - $449. Rumors are also talking about a possible $50 price hike (it's not confirmed though). If that turns out to be the case, the A55 may be retailing for $500.

On the other hand, the Pixel 8a is expected to be around the same price, $499. Judging by the price hike on the Pixel 8 series though, it's possible for the 8a's price to climb even more, to around $549.

And then comes the Nothing Phone 2a. Rumors here claim a more exhilarating price of around €349 for the 8/128GB model, and €399 for the 12/156GB model. Yep, the leaked price is in Euro though... and when we talk about phones, the price isn't always directly converted (for financial reasons I won't delve into right now). But even if the Phone 2a starts at $400 in the US, it still steals the show.

As you can see, the Phone 2a is shaping up to be serious competition for the boys from Google and Samsung. The compelling design, promising performance, and excellent price tag (if all those turn out to be true!) may be just what midrange buyers need. And in general, what the smartphone market needs.

All in all, that these are just my guesses based on rumors and expectations. Only time will tell if I end up correct or not - but as the Nothing Phone 2a's release draws near, I'm getting excited to know if I was right. And most likely, many midrange buyers will be excited to know as well!

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