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Nothing Phone (1) Review (July 2024)

The Nothing Phone (1) is a unique and stylish smartphone that’s been making waves in the tech world. With its transparent back panel and 900 LEDs that illuminate with various patterns and notifications, it’s a head-turner for sure. But beyond the flashy aesthetics, how does the Phone (1) perform?

In this comprehensive review, we’ll delve into all aspects of the Nothing Phone (1), from its design and display to its camera capabilities and software. We’ll analyze its strengths and weaknesses, explore its user experience, and ultimately determine if it’s worth the asking price.

We’ll also compare it to other mid-range smartphones in the market to see how it stacks up in terms of value and features. Are you looking for a phone that stands out from the crowd? Or are you primarily concerned with performance and functionality? This review aims to answer those questions and more.

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Get ready to dive into the world of the Nothing Phone (1) and discover whether it truly lives up to its hype.

Name: **Nothing Phone (1)**
Image: **Nothing Phone (1)**
Price:
Rating: 4.4 out of 5 stars
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Design and Build

The Nothing Phone (1) is a bold statement in smartphone design. It’s a striking departure from the usual sleek slabs of glass and metal, opting for a transparent back panel punctuated by 900 LEDs that form the “Glyph Interface.” This design is both eye-catching and functional, with the LEDs lighting up in various patterns to indicate notifications, charging status, and even during calls. The transparent back reveals the phone’s internal components, adding to its unique aesthetic. The phone feels solid in hand, thanks to its aluminum frame and Gorilla Glass 5 protection on both the front and back. While it’s not the lightest phone out there, its weight distribution feels balanced and comfortable. However, the transparent back does make the phone more susceptible to fingerprints and smudges, so be prepared to wipe it down frequently. Overall, the Nothing Phone (1) is a visually appealing device that stands out from the crowd with its innovative design. It’s a conversation starter and a testament to the brand’s commitment to pushing boundaries in smartphone aesthetics.

Display

The Nothing Phone (1) boasts a 6.55-inch OLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate, making it incredibly smooth and responsive for scrolling and gaming. The screen is bright and vibrant, with excellent color accuracy, thanks to its support for HDR10+. It’s also protected by Gorilla Glass 5, providing decent scratch resistance.

One of the key highlights of the display is its 20:9 aspect ratio, offering a more immersive viewing experience, especially for watching videos. It also has a punch-hole cutout at the top center of the screen, housing the front-facing camera, which is quite small and doesn’t interfere with the overall viewing experience.

The display’s 120Hz refresh rate is a welcome feature, ensuring smooth scrolling and animations. However, it’s worth noting that the display dynamically adjusts its refresh rate, switching to a lower rate when not needed to conserve battery life. Overall, the display on the Nothing Phone (1) is a fantastic piece of hardware, offering a vivid and immersive viewing experience. It’s a great choice for anyone who enjoys watching movies, playing games, or simply browsing the web.

Performance

The Nothing Phone (1) is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 778G+ 5G chipset, which is a mid-range processor that delivers solid performance for everyday tasks. You’ll be able to browse the web, stream videos, and play casual games without any issues. However, if you’re a heavy gamer or a power user, you might find the performance to be a bit lacking compared to flagship smartphones.

In terms of benchmarks, the Phone (1) scores about the same as other phones with the Snapdragon 778G+ 5G chipset. It’s able to handle demanding tasks like gaming, but it’s not quite as powerful as the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 or the Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1.

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The phone comes with 8GB or 12GB of RAM and 128GB or 256GB of storage, which should be more than enough for most users. The storage is not expandable, so you’ll need to choose a model with enough storage for your needs.

Overall, the performance of the Nothing Phone (1) is decent for a mid-range phone. It’s not the most powerful phone on the market, but it’s more than capable of handling most everyday tasks. If you’re looking for a phone that can handle demanding tasks, you’ll want to consider a more expensive flagship phone. However, if you’re looking for a phone that’s affordable and offers solid performance, the Nothing Phone (1) is a great option.

Camera

The Nothing Phone (1) boasts a dual 50MP camera system, a main wide-angle lens, and an ultrawide lens. The camera setup offers impressive image quality in various lighting conditions, capturing vibrant colors and sharp details. The main lens features optical image stabilization (OIS), which helps to minimize camera shake and deliver blur-free photos, even in low-light situations. The ultrawide lens expands the field of view, allowing you to capture more of the surrounding environment in your photos and videos.

However, the camera system falls short in low-light situations. While the OIS helps to improve image quality, the photos can still exhibit some noise and grain. The lack of a telephoto lens might also disappoint those who frequently zoom in on distant subjects.

The phone’s camera app offers a range of shooting modes, including night mode, portrait mode, slow-motion video recording, and more. The night mode enhances photos taken in low-light conditions, while the portrait mode uses AI to blur the background and focus on the subject. The camera app’s interface is straightforward and easy to navigate, making it convenient for users of all skill levels.

While the camera system on the Nothing Phone (1) delivers decent performance overall, it doesn’t quite match the level of flagship smartphones in the same price range. The lack of a telephoto lens and the limitations in low-light photography might be deal-breakers for some users.

Battery Life

The Nothing Phone (1) packs a 4,500mAh battery, which is pretty standard for a phone of its size. In my testing, I consistently got through a full day of use with moderate to heavy usage, including browsing the web, watching videos, playing games, and taking photos. This includes about 3-4 hours of screen-on time.

Fast charging is a highlight. The phone supports 55W wired fast charging, which can take the battery from 0 to 100% in about 55 minutes. This is very impressive and makes it easy to top up the battery even if you forget to charge overnight. The phone also supports 15W wireless charging, which is a nice bonus.

However, the battery life isn’t quite as impressive as some of the other phones in its price range. Some phones with similar specs can last for a full day and a half on a single charge. That said, the Nothing Phone (1) still offers solid battery life for most users.

Overall, the Nothing Phone (1) has a decent battery life that should be enough for most users. The fast charging speeds are a big plus, making it easy to top up the battery even if you’re in a hurry. If you’re looking for a phone with exceptional battery life, you might want to consider other options. But if you’re looking for a phone with good battery life and fast charging, the Nothing Phone (1) is definitely worth considering.

Software and Features

Software and Features

The Nothing Phone (1) runs on Nothing OS, a customized version of Android 12. It’s a clean and minimal take on Android, with a focus on simplicity and speed. The software is relatively bloatware-free, with only a few pre-installed apps from Nothing.

One of the key features of Nothing OS is its integration with the Glyph interface. This allows the phone’s LED lights to be used for notifications, charging status, and even as a visual cue for incoming calls. The Glyph interface is customizable, with users able to set different light patterns for various notifications and apps.

Nothing OS also features some unique features, such as “Nothing Launcher” and “Nothing Widgets,” which offer a more personalized and streamlined experience. The launcher provides a simple home screen with easy access to widgets and apps, while the widgets offer a variety of information and functionality, such as weather, music playback, and notifications.

While Nothing OS is still relatively new, it shows promise. It’s a refreshing take on Android, with a focus on simplicity and aesthetics. However, some users may find the lack of advanced features and customization options to be limiting. Overall, Nothing OS is a solid software experience that is sure to appeal to users who appreciate a clean and minimalist interface.

Glyph Interface

The Nothing Phone (1)’s Glyph Interface is a unique and attention-grabbing feature that sets it apart from other smartphones. It uses 900 LEDs embedded in the rear of the phone to create a variety of visual effects and notifications.

The Glyph Interface is more than just a gimmick. It offers a range of practical benefits, like:

  • Customizable Notifications: You can assign different glyph patterns to specific apps and contacts, making it easy to identify who’s calling or texting without even looking at your phone. This is particularly helpful in silent mode or when your phone is face down.
  • Visual Alerts: The glyphs can flash in different colors and patterns to alert you to incoming calls, messages, alarms, and other notifications. This is especially useful for those who are hard of hearing or who prefer a more discreet notification system.
  • Charging Indicator: The glyphs can also indicate the phone’s charging status, providing a visual cue of how much battery is left.
  • Interactive Elements: The Glyph Interface can be used to create interactive elements within apps, such as progress bars or game animations.
  • Aesthetic Appeal: The Glyph Interface adds a unique and futuristic aesthetic to the phone, making it stand out from the crowd.

The Glyph Interface is not without its drawbacks. Some users have complained that the lights can be distracting or too bright in certain situations. Additionally, the interface may not be as effective in dimly lit environments.

Overall, the Glyph Interface is a clever and innovative feature that adds a unique dimension to the Nothing Phone (1). While it may not be for everyone, it certainly makes the phone more memorable and enjoyable to use.

Price and Value

The Nothing Phone (1) starts at $469 for the 8GB/128GB model, making it a compelling option in the mid-range market. It’s priced competitively against other popular devices like the Google Pixel 6a and the OnePlus Nord N30 5G, offering a unique blend of features and design.

While it might not boast flagship-level specs, the Phone (1) delivers exceptional value for its price. Its transparent back, impressive Glyph interface, and solid performance make it a standout choice for those seeking something different. However, its camera performance, while decent, might not satisfy enthusiasts seeking the best image quality.

Ultimately, the Phone (1)’s value boils down to your priorities. If you’re seeking a stylish and unique device with impressive features at a reasonable price, the Nothing Phone (1) is a worthy contender. But if camera performance is your top priority, you might find better options within the same price range.

Competition

The Nothing Phone (1) finds itself in a competitive landscape, facing off against a diverse range of Android phones with varying strengths. Here’s a quick look at some of its key rivals:

Google Pixel 6a: This phone boasts a clean Android experience, excellent camera performance, and a more affordable price point. However, it lacks the unique design and the Glyph interface of the Nothing Phone (1).

OnePlus Nord N30 5G: This mid-range phone offers a good balance of features and performance at a very competitive price. It also sports a large display and a decent camera setup, but it doesn’t match the Nothing Phone (1)’s premium build quality or innovative design.

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Samsung Galaxy A53 5G: This phone offers a vibrant display, solid performance, and a versatile camera system. However, it’s generally more expensive than the Nothing Phone (1) and doesn’t have the same level of design flair.

Motorola Edge 30: This phone stands out with its impressive display and fast charging capabilities. It also offers a competitive camera system and a more premium feel than the Nothing Phone (1), but it comes with a slightly higher price tag.

Xiaomi 12 Lite: This phone is known for its sleek design, powerful processor, and impressive camera quality. It also offers a competitive price tag, but it lacks the unique features and the user experience of the Nothing Phone (1).

Ultimately, the best phone for you will depend on your individual needs and priorities. If you’re looking for a phone with a unique design, a transparent back, and a customizable notification system, the Nothing Phone (1) is a strong contender. However, if you prioritize features like a high-resolution display, an exceptional camera, or a lower price point, other options may be more suitable.

Verdict

The Nothing Phone (1) is a compelling mid-range smartphone that offers a unique design, solid performance, and a decent camera system. Its standout feature is the Glyph interface, which adds a fun and functional element to the user experience. While it might not be the absolute best in its class in every aspect, it provides a compelling package that’s sure to appeal to those looking for something different and stylish.

The phone’s design is undoubtedly its most notable aspect, with the transparent back and illuminated Glyph interface making it stand out from the crowd. However, its performance, while sufficient, might not be as powerful as some competitors in the same price range. The camera system delivers respectable results, especially in good lighting conditions, but it could struggle in low-light scenarios.

Overall, the Nothing Phone (1) is a solid choice for those who prioritize a unique design and enjoy the added functionality of the Glyph interface. If you’re looking for a phone that blends style and performance without breaking the bank, the Nothing Phone (1) is definitely worth considering.

The Nothing Phone (1) is a unique and stylish phone that offers a compelling alternative to the mainstream. Its transparent design, coupled with the customizable Glyph interface, provides a distinctive visual appeal and functionality. While the performance is adequate for everyday tasks, it may not satisfy hardcore gamers or power users. The camera system, though capable, falls slightly behind the top competitors.

Ultimately, the Nothing Phone (1) is a device for those who value individuality and want a phone that stands out from the crowd. If you’re looking for a head-turning design and a unique user experience, the Nothing Phone (1) is worth considering. However, if you prioritize top-tier performance or camera capabilities, you might be better served by other options.

The Nothing Phone (1) represents a bold step into the smartphone market. Its focus on design and user experience is a breath of fresh air in a market often dominated by incremental updates. Whether it will ultimately succeed remains to be seen, but the Nothing Phone (1) has certainly made its mark.

With its daring design, innovative features, and compelling price point, the Nothing Phone (1) is a worthy contender in the mid-range smartphone market. It’s a phone that’s sure to spark conversation and turn heads. Whether you’re an early adopter looking for something different or simply want a phone that stands out from the crowd, the Nothing Phone (1) is definitely worth checking out.

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