Nokia's mid-range X6 handset and its notch could be US-bound


Nokia launched its X6 midrange Android handset in China earlier this week. The phone is the company's first with a notched screen and razor-thin bezels, a look that's come to characterize new handsets in 2018. The manufacturer's chief product officer posted a Twitter poll asking prospective buyers if the the X6 should be offered in other markets. The response was resoundingly receptive to the idea—92% of respondents answered in the affirmative.


This woman might be wondering, "Where did the bezels go?"

The X6's standout feature is unquestionably the notched 5.8" IPS display. The panel has a 2280x1080 resolution that works out to a 19:9 aspect ratio and a pixel density of roughly 435 PPI. Nokia says the screen covers just over 80% of the face of the phone. That high screen-to-bezel ratio means the fingerprint reader has been relegated to the back of the handset.

The X6 is built around the midrange Qualcomm Snapdragon 636 SoC we've seen in Asus' ZenPhone 5. The chip is paired with either 4 GB or 6 GB of memory and 32 GB or 64 GB of internal storage in the Chinese market, though offerings could vary in other regions. Users can expand the storage by as much as 256 GB by adding a microSD card.

The camera setup includes a 16-megapixel, f/2.0-aperture snapper in the notch at the top of X6's screen plus a pair of sensors on the backside. The primary rear sensor is another 16-MP with an f/2.0 aperture on the lens that can record video at 1920x1080 at 30 FPS. That camera gets help from a 5-MP monochrome shooter. The main camera has electronic image stabilization, and the front camera supports the X6's face-unlocking feature.

Users can put electrons into the phone and get data out using the USB 2.0 Type-C connector on the bottom. All that juice is stored in a 3060-mAh battery with Qualcomm's Quick Charge 3.0 technology. The X6 also gets a headphone jack for private audio without the need for an easily-lost dongle or special USB-C headphones. The handset is 5.8" tall (14.7 cm), 2.8" wide (7.1 cm), 0.31" thick (0.8 cm), and weighs 5.4 oz (153 g).

Nokia installs Android 8.1 Oreo on China-bound versions of the X6. If the phone does end up coming to the West, we hope the company sees fit to bring it with Android P, or at least publicly commit to a future update. Nokia typically doesn't monkey too much with the OS as Google built it, and has generally promised timelier and longer-lasting updates than many other Android vendors. Hopefully those trends can continue with a US-market version of the X6.

The Nokia X6 is supposed to hit Chinese stores later this month. The version with 4 GB of memory and 32 GB of storage starts at ¥1299, a figure that converts to a little more than $200. The top-shelf version with 6 GB of RAM and 64 GB of internal storage comes in at ¥1699, or about $265. The company hasn't offered information about when a Western release could happen or what the price tag might be.  Buyers that want a Nokia phone with a less-nebulous release date can check out manufacturer's 6.1 handset we covered a couple of weeks ago.

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