Nokia X6 First Impressions: Tries too hard to fit in

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The Nokia X6 that launched in China last month is the Finnish brand’s first phone with a notch. The naming of the device is once again a throwback to Nokia’s glorious past. The X6 back then was a class-leading mobile phone with a touchscreen TFT display. Fast forward to 2018, it is now the first Nokia with a display notch. Not that it makes the phone any special. The market is flooded with phones that sport the notch. To be frank, despite all the hype and excitement around the phone’s impending launch in India, the Nokia X6 left me quite disappointed for the little time I got to play with it on the MWC Shanghai 2018 show floor.

The Nokia X6 is a mid-range smartphone through and through. It has a 5.8-inch IPS LCD panel with the new 19:9 aspect ratio and full HD+ resolution. I didn’t spot a feature to hide the notch in the Chinese ROM that the phone was running. In its defence, the notch on the Nokia X6 doesn’t take up a lot of space. Nokia phones are known for their pure Android offering, but in China, the company is mandated to ship with a custom ROM that at best, just mimics stock Android. Thankfully, the phone was running on Android 8.1 Oreo on top with the May 2018 security patch.

The Nokia X6, like most other new phones, boasts of a lot of ‘AI’ features. There’s a floating touch button in the UI that apparently uses AI to learn from your habits and offer you relevant apps and shortcuts. Then there is a feature that can process the text you’re reading and split them into different keywords to show you information about films, stores, goods, flights, locations and more.

Furthermore, the Nokia X6 also supports gesture-based navigation that doesn’t rely on the navigation button any more. It did seem quite fluid and exactly like what Xiaomi offers.

At the back, the phone has a design similar to the Nokia 8 Sirocco. The raised dual camera unit in the middle along with a glass body. It was also quite light. The black variant was particularly prone to smudges. There’s a fingerprint sensor right at the bottom of the rear camera and the Nokia logo below it. The Nokia moniker is also there below the display up front. The X6 uses the Pro Camera app for photography. The dual 16MP+5MP unit did take some decent shots. On the front is another 16-megapixel shooter.

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The Nokia X6 feels like it’s trying too hard to fit in. It’s a good device nonetheless. There is a Snapdragon 636 chipset inside that’s all the rage these days thanks to the Redmi Note 5 Pro along with up to 6GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. It’s easy to guess who the Nokia X6 intends to compete with, in India. The company’s biggest flaw so far has been in its pricing strategy. That was somewhat corrected earlier this year with the launch of the Nokia 6.1 and the Nokia 7 Plus. Possibly, with the Nokia X6, HMD might finally be able to compete neck-to-neck with its rivals.

(digit.in, https://goo.gl/M47WHc)

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