Right after Nokia 4.2, HMD Global has now unveiled yet another mid-range smartphone, dubbed as Nokia 3.2 in India. Notably, the device starts at Rs. 8,990 for the 2GB RAM and 16GB storage variant and goes as high as Rs. 10,790 for the one with 3GB RAM and 32GB storage.
This time, Nokia is relying on a large display and battery to grab eyes in the mid-range segment. In fact, Nokia 3.2 is one of the companies first smartphones to bear a water-drop notch. But, is it enough to conquer the fierce competition from other Chinese players? That said, let’s dive into our Nokia 3.2 review to see if it really managed to dazzle us.
Design & Display
Undoubtedly, Nokia has learnt designing its phones very well. Though not very distinct, the Nokia 3.2 looks sleek and modern, thanks to its glossy back panel which is very similar to its elder sibling, the Nokia 4.2. The back, however, attracts a lot of dust and smudges.
The rear houses a single camera, sitting right in the median along with an LED flash that flushes well with the design. Below it, we have a fingerprint scanner which works well and is comfortable to reach.
Coming to the front, there’s a 6.26-inch water-drop notched display with an HD+ resolution of 1520 x 720 pixels and a 269ppi pixel density. The screen is quite big, offers good colours and viewing angles. However, I’d have loved to see more pixels stuffed in here. Note that the bezels are quite thick at the base and top. Nonetheless, the display is decent enough for enjoying media content on YouTube and Netflix.
As for the port and button placements, the phone gets the volume rockers and power button to the right. The latter has a white LED for notifications. Whereas, the left frame gets a dual sim and microSD card slot along with a Google Assistant key. The key will allow you to interact with the Assitant on a single press. On the top, we have a 3.5mm headphone jack, while the base features a micro USB port along with speaker grille and mic.
Performance & Software
Under the hood, the Nokia 3.2 is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 429 processor coupled with Adreno 504 GPU. The phone is offered in two RAM and storage configurations- 2/16GB and 3/32GB.
It’s clear that the Nokia 3.2 falls short of the competition in the performance department. Smartphones from other Chinese players have already made 600-series chipsets quite common in that price bracket. Nonetheless, the phone handles day to day tasks with ease, and we didn’t face any lag in our usage.
Things get quite interesting in the software department. The phone incorporates something you’ll demand in the mid-range segment, i.e., the Android One. It runs stock Android 9.0 Pie under the Android One programme. As a result, you’ll be benefitted from three years of monthly security patches and two major OS updates.
It’s a bliss for those who want pure Android experience in the sub-10K segment. Moreover, Nokia has implemented biometric face unlock, which works pretty well in our experience.
In the camera department, the Nokia 3.2 gets a single 13-megapixel rear camera with f/2.2 aperture at the rear. For selfies, there’s a 5-megapixel shooter housed in the water-drop notch.
The camera app is quite neat and is equipped with specific modes like Square, Time-lapse, Google Lens and Panorama. As for the camera performance, the phone shows a noticeable amount of shutter lag, followed by the slow processing time and struggles in focusing. Nonetheless, it manages to click pictures decent enough for social media. The front camera, too, is very basic and produces average quality selfies.
Battery & Connectivity
Powered by a massive 4,000mAh battery, a low-res display and a power efficient chipset, the Nokia 3.2 will easily last more than a day for an average user. Note that the device doesn’t support fast charging.
As for the connectivity, it is equipped with 4G VoLTE, Bluetooth, WiFi, GPS, GLONASS, a 3.5mm jack and a micro USB port.
As evident, Nokia 3.2 lacks majorly in the performance department. The cameras aren’t impressive either. However, it’s a sweet option for those who want pure Android experience with timely updates, a large display and a solid battery life in the sub-10K price segment.