Nokia Phones are Coming Back

The first high-end smartphone from HMD Global, the Finnish group making smartphones under the Nokia brand, will be called the Nokia 8, according to new reports from VentureBeat’s Evan Blass and tech blog WinFuture.

Blass, who is well-known in tech circles for accurately leaking products, tweeted a picture of the alleged device on Monday.Both VentureBeat and WinFuture tip the Nokia 8 to launch on July 31. It’s not yet clear where exactly the phone will be available. The reports suggest it’ll cost close to €600, though that may vary by region.

Here’s a rundown of what to expect from the device, according to the reports:

A 5.3-inch, 2560 x 1400 resolution display. A Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 chip, which is Qualcomm’s most powerful model. 4 GB or 6 GB of RAM. A dual-camera setup on the back, with both cameras set at 13-megapixels. Android 7.1.1 Nougat, which is close to the latest version of Google’s operating system.
If the leaked image is correct, then the big borders above and below the display will make the Nokia 8 look a bit dated next to the mini-bezel designs of the Samsung Galaxy S8, LG G6, and, reportedly, the next iPhone.

But the reported specs are suitably high-end, and HMD Global has committed to putting a near-stock version of Android on all of its phones. That means it should be free of extraneous, performance-draining apps.

Nokia 6

The mid-range Nokia 6 launched globally earlier this year, and arrived in the US earlier this month. Reuters
The most interesting thing about the device, though, will be its name. To be clear, this phone would not come from Nokia, the storied smartphone maker that floundered with Microsoft as Android and the iPhone came to power, then got out of making handsets entirely. Instead, it’d be from HMD Global, which acquired the rights to the Nokia brand for use on its phones last year and is headed by former Nokia execs.

The company has already launched a trio of low- to mid-tier phones under the Nokia name, and just recently launched one of those devices through Amazon in the US, but hasn’t launched a true competitor for the best phones on the market to date.

If the Nokia 8 is that high-end device, it’s unlikely to see major sales success unless it gains extensive carrier support, which HMD Global has yet to gain in the US. But for Android enthusiasts or those easily struck by nostalgia, this may be a rumor to keep an eye on.

HMD Global declined to comment.