Nokia announced the X7 for the Chinese market in October. At a hardware event in Dubai today, the company revealed its identity for the rest of the world: the Nokia 8.1. It's the same phone as was announced a few weeks ago — dual rear cameras, Snapdragon 710, and a competitive price tag — just with a new name.
The 8.1 offers some serious specs for a relatively budget-friendly device, including a 3,500 mAh battery, up to six gigs of RAM, and Android 9 Pie out of the box thanks to Android One. It also sports Nokia's minimalist aesthetic in three color combinations: Blue/Silver, Steel/Copper, and Iron/Steel.
|Screen||6.2" 1080p LCD|
|RAM||4 or 6 GB|
|Camera||12+13 MP rear, 20 MP front|
|Storage||64 or 128 GB, expandable via MicroSD|
|Software||Android 9 Pie (Android One)|
|Price||Starting at €399|
We'd expected the 8.1 to be called the 7.1 Plus internationally; Nokia says the decision to bump the number up instead was in the interest of simplifying naming conventions. The phone will go on sale with an average price of €399 (that's about $450 for us Yanks) starting in mid-December, although local availability is yet to be announced. You can find more information and sign up for updates at Nokia's website.
Nokia 8.1 – elevating the value flagship experience
Brings flagship calibre imaging with ZEISS Optics, PureDisplay screen technology and accelerated performance to the value flagship segment
HMD Global, the home of Nokia phones, today announces the Nokia 8.1, the newest addition to its value flagship range. As with other Nokia smartphones in the same category, including the award-winning Nokia 7 plus, the Nokia 8.1 punches above its weight with extraordinary imaging achieved by its highly sensitive, industry-leading camera sensor, ZEISS Optics and Optical Image Stabilization (OIS). Proprietary PureDisplay screen technology with HDR 10 support along with highly accurate colour reproduction delivers enhanced viewing experiences even in bright sunlight, while the chipset ensures smooth performance for up to two days per charge.
All of this comes in a contemporary package with the precise craftsmanship expected from a Nokia smartphone. Running the latest Android software, Android 9 Pie, the Nokia 8.1 delivers the best Android experience with the latest innovations right out of the box.
Juho Sarvikas, Chief Product Officer, HMD Global:
“We’ve seen great success in the value flagship category with each of our smartphones in this class consistently introducing new premium experiences to our fans. With the Nokia 8.1, we are further pushing the boundaries in this segment. We offer accelerated performance with a first-class processor architecture, dual cameras with an industry-leading sensor, OIS and ZEISS Optics for great low light imaging, and our new PureDisplay HDR screen technology.
“As well as delivering the meticulous craftsmanship and build quality of the renowned Nokia smartphone design, we have also brought the Android 9 Pie experience to our fans, so they can enjoy the latest Android innovations including new Digital Wellbeing features. Our fans are at the heart of every design and engineering decision. We want to give them premium experiences – we hope they agree that the Nokia 8.1 embodies engineering excellence at great value.”
Imaging excellence with flagship calibre imaging technology
The Nokia 8.1’s great low light imaging performance comes from a perfect blend of software and hardware. Its 12MP main camera with ZEISS Optics has an industry-leading 1/2.55” super sensitive sensor with large 1.4 micron pixels for precise light capture, delivering exceptionally detailed images. With its combination of Optical Image Stabilisation (OIS) technology and superfast autofocus, the Nokia 8.1 doesn’t let shaky hands stop you from capturing crisp images and videos. A wide aperture ensures you can capture sharp pictures even in low light conditions, allowing longer exposure times that can be manually controlled with the Pro Camera mode.
The 20MP adaptive front camera lets you capture the ultimate night-time selfie, as it enhances how much light it is able to capture by combining four pixels into one super pixel. You can also shoot movies like a pro with 4K video and relive your memories as if you were still there with high fidelity Nokia spatial audio stereo surround sound recording.
Create studio-style portrait shots with the popular “bokeh” effect, enhanced with the Nokia 8.1’s native shallow depth of field, coupled with its secondary 13MP depth sensor. Unleash your creativity with the Pro Camera UI for the ultimate control over your photos, or take your #Bothie game to the next level with AI-powered 3D personas, masks and fun filters in your photos and videos, all of which you can livestream directly without leaving your camera app.
Accelerated performance and PureDisplay
With smartphones rapidly becoming the default device for watching videos, you need a display tailored to the content you’re enjoying in the environment you’re in. The Nokia 8.1 is the second Nokia smartphone to come with PureDisplay screen technology for an enhanced viewing experience. Visuals are taken to another level with HDR 10 delivering higher contrast, great clarity, and over a billion individual colours to ensure images remain accurate whether you’re in a dark room or bright sunlight. Playing games or watching videos, your display will deliver the best possible experience.
To watch all that vivid content on the go, you need exceptional battery life. The Nokia 8.1 lets you effortlessly enjoy up to two days with one charge. Long-lasting power combined with the Snapdragon 710 Mobile Platform means the Nokia 8.1 can get through any task without breaking a sweat, with 35% faster graphics and 20% higher performance than the previous generation, the Snapdragon 660. It also has twice the AI power, thanks to a multi-core AI Engine which combines a brand-new architecture for efficient performance. Qualcomm® aptX™ audio support also means music lovers can enjoy high quality sound wirelessly over Bluetooth.
Take the smartphone to a whole new dimension by combining the physical world and digital content with AR core support. Through apps like Human Anatomy, Magic Plan, and Jenga AR, you can visualise and learn about the nervous system in 3D, create a floor plan for your next remodel just by walking around the house, and stack blocks on your dining room table with no need to tidy up after your tower collapses.
Design that is made to the highest standards
Heralding a new era of precision craftsmanship and obsession with detail, the Nokia 8.1 has been designed with less than a hair’s width between materials, achieving the build quality and structural integrity expected from a Nokia smartphone, as well as making a true statement of clean, elegant European design.
At its core is the strength of an extruded 6000-series aluminium frame with a diecast centre for efficient use of materials. Exploiting the elegant contrast between the curved glass, polished metal and the sand-blasted finish, the Nokia 8.1’s unique two-tone design is augmented with a dual anodising process, building on the finish that fans loved on the Nokia 7 plus. Diamond cut edges deliver a bold statement with the durability to withstand the knocks of everyday life.
The Nokia 8.1’s stunning 6.18” Full HD+ edge-to-edge display is housed within a beautifully refined and neat footprint, so you can enjoy your favourite movies and apps on a big screen comfortably on the go, giving you even more screen than the award-winning Nokia 7 plus which as a 6” display.
Pure, secure and up-to-date Android 9 Pie, reinforced with Android One™
The Nokia 8.1 is the first Nokia smartphone to launch with Android 9 Pie out of the box. It joins the comprehensive line-up of Nokia smartphones in the Android One family, which means it delivers the best version of Android innovations and software experiences. Nokia smartphones with Android One offer great storage and battery life right out of the box and come with three years of monthly security patches and two major OS updates.
Jon Gold, Director of Android One Partnerships, Google:
“As an important partner for Google, HMD Global has enabled a diverse portfolio of Android One devices with a software experience that is fresh and secure. We're thrilled to continue our partnership with HMD Global on the new Nokia 8.1, the brand's first device with Android 9 Pie out of the box. Android 9 improves interactions on the Nokia 8.1 with intelligent and simple experiences, along with new Digital Wellbeing features.”
The Nokia 8.1 comes with Android 9 Pie, which includes AI-powered features that make your device smarter and faster while also adapting to your behavior as you use it, so your smartphone gets better with time. The Adaptive Battery feature limits battery usage from apps you don’t use often, and App Actions predicts what you’re about to do so you can get to your next action quickly. These features further streamline your device’s functionality and your overall Android experience. The Nokia 8.1 also combines the capabilities of Google Assistant with Dual-Sight, so you can ask it to take #Bothie pictures and videos, and even command it to livestream to YouTube for a convenient and seamless experience.
The Nokia 8.1 will receive three years of monthly security patches and two major OS updates, as guaranteed in the Android One programme. In addition, Google Play™ protect scans over 50 billion apps per day to keep your phone safe from malware, making the Nokia 8.1 among the most secure phones on the market. It also comes with easy access to helpful innovative services including the Google Assistant, which helps you get things done throughout the day, as well as Google Photos with free unlimited high-quality photo storage. Nokia 8.1 is part of the Android Enterprise Recommended programme which means it is recommended by Google as best choice for professionals.
The Nokia Phoenix will be available in three colour combinations, Blue/Silver, Steel/Copper, Iron/Steel, starting mid-December and will retail for an average global retail price of 399 €, exclusive of taxes and subsidies.
For further information, please contact the HMD Press Office: [email protected]