Nokia is ending another busy smartphone year by unveiling a spiritual successor to the excellent Nokia 7 Plus.
Sitting above the Nokia 7.1, the Nokia 8.1 is the brand’s latest flagship device. However, at £379.99, it’s priced to aggressively battle it out with the mid-range champs from the likes of Honor and Huawei.
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The Nokia 8.1’s standout feature is surely its 6.1-inch PureDisplay screen, which boasts support for HDR 10 and an FHD+ resolution. The phone will be able to playback high dynamic range content as well as upscale SDR content to bring out richer colours. Nokia has been bringing HDR screens to cheaper phones this year and it certainly helps them stand out among the competition.
That display stretches nearly edge-to-edge (well, aside from large chin at the bottom and the notch at the top) and has the same rounded corners you’ll find on pricier phones.
Notch-haters will be happy to see there’s a way to disable the cutout, covering it with a black bar.
HMD Global, the brand that owns the Nokia name, has also included some powerful − for the price − specs inside this device. There’s a Snapdragon 710 running the show, 64GB storage and a beefy 3500mAh battery. Hopefully that battery should get you comfortably through the day without needing to reach for a charger.
On the back you’ll spot a circular fingerprint scanner along with a 12-megapixel main camera. This camera packs Zeiss branding, along with OIS. Like the HDR display, optical image stabilisation is often a feature reserved for phones with a much higher pricetag.
A 13-megapixel depth sensor sits below the main camera, taking care of portrait shots and adding that silky blur effect that has become so popular recently. On the front there’s more megapixels, with a 20-megapixel sensor taking care of your selfies.
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Like all the recent HMD Global Nokia phones, the Nokia 8.1 runs on Android One. This ditches the bloatware and gives you a pretty vanilla version of Android 9 Pie and the promise of future updates. We’ve found some bugs in Android One phones before, so it’ll be interesting to see if they’ve been sorted here.
The Nokia 8.1 will be available in three colour combos: blue/silver, steel/copper, iron/steel, from 14 January 2019. You’ll be able to grab it for £379.99. We’ll have a full review of the Nokia 8.1 once we’ve spent some time with the phone.
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