Nothing Phone (2): Everything you need to knowon May 19, 2023 at 10:24 Tech Advisor
One of the most interesting devices of 2022 was the Nothing Phone (1). It wasn’t just the cool lighting on the rear that made it stand out (although that helped), but rather the emergence of a new brand that managed to take on the big boys without being wiped out.
The next generation of the handset is on the way and due to launch in the next few months, so how will Carl Pei and his team deal with the traditionally difficult second album?
Here’s all we know so far about the Nothing Phone (2).
When will the Nothing Phone (2) be released?
The only official release window for the Nothing Phone (2) is a vague one: ‘summer 2023’.
That comes from an official event page for the phone’s launch, where you can sign up to receive updates on the phone.
The Phone (1) made its debut in July 2022, so given we’ve been promised a summer launch it seems likely that we’ll get the new phone around July this year too.
One major change this time around is that the Phone (2) will get an official launch in the US, as confirmed by Carl Pei, the company’s CEO, in an interview with Inverse.
One final detail is that in late March the phone was spotted on the BIS (Bureau of Indian Standards) certification site by 91mobiles. The listing itself doesn’t reveal anything about the Phone (2) aside from a model number (AIN065), but certification suggests that the phone is finished and nearly ready to launch. Could we see it arrive even before July?
How much will the Nothing Phone (2) cost?
Again, it’s too early to know for sure. The Nothing Phone (1) surprised many people (us among them) when it’s hugely competitive pricing was revealed. Here’s how the various configurations lined up:
8GB + 128GB: £399/€469/₹33,999/$299 (beta-only in US) 8GB + 256GB: £449/€499/₹36,999 (approx. $540)12GB + 256GB: £499/€549/₹39,999 (approx. $600)
Dominic Preston / Foundry
In the interview with Inverse, Carl Pei did say that the new device would be “more premium than the Nothing Phone (1),” which could indicate a move from the mid-range to the higher end. Obviously, this would bring a price increase, although how much is uncertain.
What features will we see in the Nothing Phone (2)?
We’re only beginning to find out what’s coming in the Nothing Phone (2). We know it will be a ‘more premium’ device, so we’re expecting some big upgrades across the board.
The semi-transparent, glowing rear of the Phone (1) was understandable one of its standout features, so all eyes are fixed on what Nothing has in store for its second phone.
We’ve already had a glimpse at the new look in the phone’s launch teaser, which shows one small part of the design. It’s hard to tell which bit of the phone we’re looking at here, but it clearly echoes the Phone (1) aesthetic while finding room to be a little different.
There are two key details to note here. The first is the red bit on the right: in the Twitter teaser this is shown flashing, so is definitely a light, most likely a return of the video recording indicator found on the first phone, though designed a little differently.
The second is the circle along the bottom edge, near the middle: is that a latch? It seems improbable, but it certainly looks a little like a latch to open a compartment – perhaps for a replaceable battery?
We know more about what will power the phone. At Mobile World Congress in February 2023, Pei announced the Nothing Phone (2) will run a Snapdragon 8 series chipset, and has since confirmed that the phone will use the 8+ Gen 1.
That’s a flagship chip from 2022, but still impressive. It’s not quite as fast as the more recent 8 Gen 2, but offers similar performance at a much lower price, which should help Nothing deliver a powerful phone that still doesn’t break the bank.
The Nothing Phone (1) came equipped with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 778G+ chip, which is a solid mid-range processor, but much less powerful than the 8+ Gen 1.
The twin 50Mp main and ultrawide cameras in the Nothing Phone (1) were actually decent, and perhaps the primary issue we detected in our review was that the computational software wasn’t quite powerful enough to make the most of the optics.
Dominic Preston / Foundry
Carl Pei has said that the company is focussed on improving the software for the new model, so we may see a similar approach to Google, which has often kept the same sensors in its Pixel cameras across multiple generations but honed the software to maximise their performance.
An area that really let the Nothing Phone (1) down was battery life. The 4500mAh battery itself is pretty standard (although 5000mAh would be better), but it drained quickly when the display was on. Added to this was the limit of a 33W maximum charging speed, which is lower than many comparatively priced Android phones.
We did see that software updates had a positive effect on battery life, so it could be that more refinements will do the trick, but an upgrade to the battery would also be a positive for the Nothing Phone (2).
We have seen one report from MySmartPrice which laid out some of the other specs that could appear in the new device. It stated that Nothing would use a Snapdragon 8-series processor, 12GB of RAM (plus virtual RAM), 256GB of storage, an AMOLED display with 120Hz refresh rate, plus a 5000mAh battery. This aligns with many of our suspicions, although it might be a while until we know for certain whether any of this comes to pass.
That’s all we have so far, but rest assured we’ll keep updating this article as more details emerge. Until then, be sure to also check out our picks of the best Android phones and best mid-range phones to see what the Nothing Phone (2) will be up against.
Mid-range smartphones, Smartphones