Nokia is slowly clawing its way back to relevancy after their failed experiments with the Microsoft Lumia line of smartphones, and the 7 Plus is a huge step in the right direction.
Starting with the build quality, this phone is on par with the all the current flagships such as the Samsung S9 and iPhone X. The special coating they’ve applied to the back of the phone give it a smooth texture between ceramic and plastic, which looks good in the black model we received. The copper accents along the edge of the screen, camera bump and fingerprint scanner also give it a classy look.
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However this is a pretty big phone, with a full HD+ 6” IPS LCD panel that doesn’t quite fit comfortably in one hand. Expect to use it mostly two-handed, as it’s fairly heavy too.
Performance is good as the 7 Plus is powered by the Snapdragon 660, the latest midrange chip from Qualcomm. With 4 GB of RAM and 256 GB of storage as standard, Facebook, Instagram, and browsing all speed along without a hitch.
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds Mobile also ran reasonably smoothly on medium settings, so a bit of gaming on the go is definitely possible. Sadly there is no waterproofing rating, which we hope can be added for the next version.
The dual-lens camera system by ZEISS optics is a high point of the device. Colours are vivid and sharp in good light, and acceptable even in low lighting conditions. A shot taken at night near SOGO in Causeway Bay has fine detail and minimal blurring. The popular bokeh effect is present as well, and does a good job of distinguishing the background objects for the out-of-focus aesthetic.
A final plus for the 7 Plus (HA!) is it runs on the streamlined bloatware-free Android One OS. Nokia states they are working closely with Google to provide an optimised experience that doesn’t force you to install redundant apps. They have also promised at least two years of security updates and free unlimited storage of photos on Google’s cloud.
At a retail price of HK$ 3,288, it’s on the high side of the midrange market. But the good performance, reliable camera, and refined look make it a good choice for both old and new Nokia fans.