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HMD Global tipped to ditch Nokia with own-branded phone

HMD Global may ditch its prominent Nokia branding for its next phone.

That’s the claim being made by 91mobiles, which carries a render of a new handset with the Finnish smartphone manufacturer’s very own name on the back of it.

As you can see, the new phone is fairly plain-looking, which would imply that it’s going to be another affordable-to-mid-range offering. That rear panel certainly looks like a plasticky material to us, especially with the lack of apparent antenna lines.

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The website reckons that the first self-branded HMD phone could hit the Indian market in April, though a global launch is expected. Previous IMEI database showings suggest that the company is working on at least two phones, though there’s a chance they’re simply regional or mobile operator-specific variants.

HMD smartphone render
Image: 91mobiles

If you’ve been aware of Nokia’s reappearance as a maker of mostly cheap Android smartphones, you may not realise that it’s actually a licensing exercise of sorts. HMD Global obtained the rights to apply the Nokia name to mobile hardware back in 2016.

Of course, the fact that the company was started by former Nokia executives, and originally set up shop opposite Nokia HQ, gives the company a certain ‘Nokia 2.0’ vibe.

The last HMD-built Nokia phone we reviewed was the Nokia G42 5G, a sub-£200 handset with strong battery life, a distinctive design, and a commendably long software support promise. We awarded the phone a very positive 4-star review, calling it “a solid phone” that achieves the rare thing of standing out from the budget crowd.

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