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Nokia 1: Android Go, dual-SIM support and everything we know so far about Nokia’s cheapest Android smartphone

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Image Courtesy: Evan Blass

HMD Global, the Finnish company behind Nokia’s comeback into the smartphone game, had a pretty successful 2017 with the likes of the Nokia 6, Nokia 5, Nokia 7 and Nokia 8 – outselling formidable legacy brands such as LG, Sony, HTC and even Google.

To kick-start its second phase, the iconic brand is about to announce a ton of new phones at 2018’s Mobile World Congress such as the flagship Nokia 9, bezel-less Nokia 7 Plus, Android Go powered Nokia 1, an Asha branded feature phone as well as global variants of the Nokia 6(2018) and the 4G variant of the Nokia 3310 – both of which were recently launched in China.

After shedding a spotlight on the Nokia 7 Plus, it is now time to talk about what to expect from Nokia’s cheapest Android smartphone to date – the Nokia 1.

Here’s what to expect from the Nokia 1:


Go Go, Android Go

Under HMD Global’s stewardship, Nokia’s comeback has basically revolved around three key factors – a razor sharp focus on design and build quality, clean and bloat-free software and the promise of timely updates. All Nokia Android smartphones to date run on a nearly stock build of Android devoid of extraneous bloat.

With their cheapest smartphone to date, HMD Global is expected to shake things up a little bit. As the Nokia 1 is set to come with quite low-end specifications, the smartphone is expected to run on Android Oreo Go – a platform developed specifically by Google for budget smartphones.

What is Android Go?

In a nutshell, Android Go is a re-packaged version of Android One (running on devices like the Xiaomi Mi A1) with a stripped down set of apps and features for bare-bone budget devices. The platform was first announced at Google I/O 2017 for entry-level smartphones with less than 1GB of RAM (as low as 512MB).

Image Courtesy: Evan Blass

Google claims that Android Go will not compromise much on functionality but will only scale down applications and features to fit the requirements of entry-level handsets. Google has re-worked almost all of its applications for the platform including Google Assistant, Google Maps, YouTube, Gmail, Play, Gboard and Chrome.

Google claims that all Android Go devices will come pre-bundled with a Play Store that will contain both kinds of apps – those designed/optimised specifically for Android Go those that are not. The company has also promised that all Android Go devices will be upgradable to Android P as and when it is released.

Low-end specifications

The Nokia 2 – which comes with 1GB of RAM, 8GB of internal storage and the low-end Snapdragon 212 processor – gives us quite a clear indication of the firepower (or the lack of it) that the Nokia 1 will have under its hood.

Rumours claim that the cheapest smartphone from Nokia’s stable will come with 1GB of RAM and 8GB of internal storage expandable via a microSD card. There is no information as of now regarding the processor, but we can expect either the Snapdragon 212 or an entry level MediaTek chipset running the show. On the connectivity front, the smartphone is expected to support dual SIMs, 4G VoLTE, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and GPS.

ALSO READ: Nokia 7 Plus: Bezel-less design, Android One, dual cameras and everything we know so far

The fact that the Nokia 1 is expected to run on the Android Go platform will give it a leg up on the Nokia 2 in terms of performance. As Android Go is specifically designed for budget phones, we can expect the Nokia 1 to run quite a bit faster than the Nokia 2 which runs a full-fledged build of Android.

Metal and polycarbonate goodness, HD display

Images leaked by prolific tipster Evan Blass point towards a pebble-like design with curved edges, a small form factor and a single rear camera.The smartphone is expected to be made out a combination of metal and polycarbonate and if past Nokia Android smartphones are anything to go by, the build quality should be top-notch.

The Nokia 1 is expected to come with a 720p IPS LCD display. While there is no concrete information about the display size, we can expect it to be somewhere in the vicinity of 5 inches to 5.5 inches.