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MWC 2018: Banana phone returns; joins Nokia's line of new smartphones
By Nestor Domingo Jr & James Lu - on 2 Mar 2018, 11:23am

MWC 2018: Banana phone returns; joins Nokia's line of new smartphones

HMD Global has announced five new smartphones at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2018: the Nokia 8 Sirocco, Nokia 7 Plus, new Nokia 6, Nokia 1, and an updated Nokia 8110, or more known as the banana phone that has been made famous in The Matrix.

Three of the smartphones – the Nokia 8 Sirocco, Nokia 7 Plus, and the Nokia 6 – will be part of Google's Android One program, which means they'll run on pure Android with software updates directly from Google itself.                                                            

Nokia 8 Sirocco

The Nokia 8 Sirocco sits at the top of HMD's new lineup. It features a 5.5-inch QHD 2,560 x 1,440 pOLED display, and 95 percent of the Nokia 8 Sirocco's design is glass, with only a hint of its thin stainless-steel chassis that visibly runs along the sides in minimalist fashion. The new glass back also adds wireless charging to the Nokia 8 Sirocco.

The fingerprint reader has been moved to the rear to reduce the bezels at the front and the glass on both the front and back curves at the sides, somewhat similar to a Samsung Galaxy S9. On the rear, you will find a dual-camera system with a 12-megapixel primary camera, a 13-megapixel camera with 2x optical zoom and ZEISS optics. The front-facing 5-megapixel camera has a wide-angle (84-degree) lens for selfies.

The Nokia 8 Sirocco is powered by Qualcomm’s 835 processor, 6GB of RAM, and 128GB of storage. 

The Nokia 8 Sirocco will be available in April priced at €749 (around PhP47,700+).

Nokia 7 Plus

The Nokia 7 Plus is HMD's bezel-less model and has a 6-inch 18:9 Full HD+ 2,160 x 1,080 display. It uses the same rear camera setup as the Nokia 8 Sirocco but swaps the glass exterior for a ceramic coating on an aluminum chassis. Plus the phone is powered by a Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 660 processor, too, and it has 4GB of RAM, and 64GB of storage.

It will be available in a choice of two colors: Black/Copper and White/Copper, the Nokia 7 Plus and will be available in April for €399 (PhP 25,400+).

Nokia 6 (2018)

HMD is also introducing a refreshed Nokia 6. The new Nokia 6 runs on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 630 processor, with either 3GB RAM and 32GB storage, or 4GB RAM and 64GB of storage. HMD has moved the fingerprint reader to the back of the 5.5-inch (1920 x 1080) device, and added a 16-megapixel camera at the rear with ZEISS optics.

The updated Nokia 6 will be available in three colors: Black/Copper, White/Iron and Blue/Gold. The 3GB variant will be available in April for €279 (PhP17,700+), with the 4GB version coming later.


Nokia 1

The Nokia 1 is an entry-level device that runs on Google's new "Android Go" platform, which is a re-designed of Android Oreo made to run better on phones with 512MB or 1GB of RAM

The Nokia 1 runs on a 1.1GHz MediaTek processor, 1GB of RAM, and just 8GB of storage. It’s a small and basic device, with a 4.5-inch display (854 x 480) and a simple 5-megapixel camera.

HMD is also bringing back Nokia’s famous polycarbonate Xpress-on covers for the Nokia 1. There will be a wide range of covers available, and the Nokia 1 will ship in red or blue models as the standard colors. 

Available from early April in Warm Red and Dark Blue, the Nokia 1 will retail for $85 (PhP 5,400+). Xpress-on covers, sold separately, will be available for $7.99 (PhP509+) in Azure, Grey, Yellow, and Pink.

Nokia 8110: Return of the banana phone

Back in 1999, The Matrix was tearing up box offices and making stars of trench coats, armless sunglasses, and the Nokia 8110, the phone used by Neo in the film, and the one everyone wanted.

Now HMD is bringing the 8110 back as a retro classic, one year after  bringing back the Nokia 3310 last year. Just like the original, the slightly curved handset has a slider that lets you answer and end calls. It will come in traditional black and, embracing its banana phone nickname, a new banana yellow color.

However, the Nokia 8110 will not run on Android and instead will have a Smart Feature OS, which means you won't get your usual smartphone apps on it. In spite of this, HMD is creating an app store for the device, which will include Facebook so there’s a chance other third parties might create their own apps for it.

The 8110 is powered by a Qualcomm 205 Mobile Platform processor, 512MB of RAM, and 4GB of storage. And unlike last year's retro 3110, it will ship with 4G LTE support. The phone has a 2.4-inch QVGA display and a 2-megapixel camera at the rear. You’ll even get access to a revamped Snake game, and an impressive 25 days of battery life when on standby more.

The Nokia 8110 will be available in May for €79 (PhP 5,000).