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Three months with the Nokia G50 … and we’re still undecided

Picture that awkward cousin who always gets the job done during family reunions. That cousin who still keeps working through the worst headache, fatigue and heatwave. Yes, that cousin. Maybe not the most attractive, or smartest - let alone the fastest - but the most reliable of the bunch. As undecided as we maybe three-months later, that's how we think the Nokia G50 fares in a nutshell in today's innovation galore smartphone market. Here's why

Nokia has a soft spot in many people’s hearts. I remember the mid/late 90s vividly as a kid waiting for my dad to comeback from work so I could play the classic snake game with his 5110 Nokia, it was all I knew how to put it on good use at the time as a wee lad. 

Nokia was at the forefront of the ringtone era from the transition of monotones with the original Nokia ringtone to Polyphonic sound and now Mp3, Nokia was there … and then it wasn’t. These were very special times but awkward teething period for mobile phones in general.

See, despite being known for its user friendly design and durable nature, in terms of high-tech specs offering Nokia has failed to keep up with the ensuing mobile phone evolution, thus failing significantly compared to the likes of iPhone, Samsung D500, Ericsson Mix Walkman phones  and Black Berry Curve, proving phones can also be a useful and high-quality music player – which is something consumers were looking for at the time.

With the exception of the bar phone Nokia 1110, released in 2003 and 2005, which became the best selling handset with over 250 million units sold, followed by the extremely popular Nokia 5800 XpressMusic, its first-ever touch screen phone (which also came with a stylus despite not being exactly a high-end device), Nokia has made a several attempts over the years with the likes of 6230 in 2003 and 6680 two years later, but not much of a big impact among consumers outside of durability and lasting battery life, even after re-releasing the 2017 4G version of our favourite retro 3310, which was a game-changer back in 2000. We really can’t say much about this one, since it’s was a clearly a statement thing, hence it was made in limited quantities and was sold out pretty much soon everywhere.

But then even with the 2018/19 Nokia 8 Sirocco, its first-ever flagship in years, which the Finnish tech maker had hoped will help recapture the market it lost in South Africa, it turned out not to be the phone many were hoping for.

“The Nokia G50 may lack the premium finish of the devices in its class, but I’ve grown to love it purely based on how solid it is. It’s reliable and sturdy” – Temoso Mokoena, aka ‘Mr. Steal Your Gadget’ @NowInSA

Nokia G50; pros and cons

So fastward to 2022, how does the G50 competes in today’s market. 

The device feel

It’s clunky, feels weighty and is made from plastics. And though the design team may have tried their best to make it look vibrant, it’s uninspiring to look at. But it’s solid when you drop it, you don’t get heart palpitations. And this is where we segway into the next point. 

Screen quality 

Now in today’s day and age, the quality of the smartphone screen is important. We spend a great chunk of our time looking at our screens and its quality, which is significantly important to the entire user-experience. This is where many people may be torn by indecisiveness when it comes to the Nokia G50. 

It features 6.82 display, dubbed by Nokia as a “made to last” screen. Now remember when I said this device is solid? The screen is made of a mix of components; it has protection as back glass, front Corning Gorilla Glass 3 and plastic frame. Interestingly, if you flick it with your finger it doesn’t make the same sound as your latest Samsung Galaxy phone or Iphone or Huawei, it kinda sounds like plastic. To Nokia’s credit, it really is made to last.

I’ve dropped this device a number of times and there’s still not a single crack on the screen; nothing. We live in a time where a screen replacement literally costs half the price of the device. When you drop your phone and hear a cracking sound, you almost pray it’s your leg and not your screen. 

The only compromise is you don’t get those vivid deep colors, it’s somewhat dull, and makes having a camera of this quality, a 48MP wide camera useless, since it’s not supported by the screen display. 

And the user interface is rather slow. I mean, I’ve used android products in this price range and I don’t think there’s a reasonable explanation for the lag and constant glitches I experience when doing basic daily tasks such as texting. 

But I’ve grown to love this device purely based on how solid it is, it feels reliable, sturdy. It doesn’t have the premium finish of the devices in its class. If it were a family reunion it would be “that awkward cousin”. However, it’s that awkward cousin who gets the job done, the cousin who keeps working through the worst headache, fatigue and heatwave. Yes that cousin. Maybe not the most attractive or smartest – let alone the fastest – but the most reliable of the bunch in today’s innovation galore smartphone market.

For the ultimate phone in battery longevity, this maybe the perfect phone in this era of loadshedding. PIC | @NowInSA
Battery life

Battery:5000 mAh, non removable. Let me say this, the battery is ridiculously good. Perhaps not having to power a hi res screen does save you alot of battery power. With just 29% battery you can make it through two hours of loadshedding, think about that.

Price point

At R6 000 you sure may have plenty of other better options to consider aesthetics-wise, but if you’re looking for the ultimate phone in battery longevity, relatability and sustainability, and only that, then the Nokia G50 is for you.

Temoso Mokoena
Temoso Mokoena
Temoso Mokoena is a tech and sneaker enthusiast who likes to stay neutral in all things.
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