Nokia 7 Plus Review: A surprise contender

Ever since HMD Global got the licence to manufacture Nokia Mobile devices, the startup has been cranking out solid smartphones that offered great value for money. One of their latest offerings is the Nokia 7 Plus, but how does it stack up against previous smartphones under the Nokia Mobile banner?

We recently took the 7 Plus (how we’ll be referring to the phone) for spin for the past couple of weeks to see if it’s worthy of the Nokia name.

Flagship looks

A hallmark of newer Nokia Mobile phones is a simple yet refined design. The same rings true for the 7 Plus. It’s not utilising an all aluminium body like the Nokia 8, but does feature a metal frame and hard plastic back cover that offers a premium-feeling mix.

The frame in particular is quite striking in copper compared to the black body of our review model. The same copper detail also appears on the edge of the camera setup and fingerprint sensor on the rear.

As such, the 7 Plus looks a bit more expensive than some of its other mid-range brethren.

Other notable design elements of the 7 Plus a 6.0″ display that touts a 18:9 screen ratio and 2 160 X 1 080 resolution.

The former is a feature that 2017’s flagship phones began sporting, and gives the 7 Plus plenty of real estate for watching videos, but we’ll tackle that later.

If there was aspect of the 7 Plus we’re not fans of, it would be its wideness at 75.6 mm. It does not always nestle nicely in hand and can be a tab more cumbersome to pick up at times, but the aforementioned aluminium frame does help with tactileness slightly.

This is not a dealbreaking aspect, and more a bit of nitpicking than anything.

Overall the design of the Nokia 7 Plus is certainly more than one might expect from a R6 599 smartphone.

Proper performer

So the 7 Plus has an enticing design, but what’s the performance like?

In this regard we were pleasantly surprised by what this mid-range device served up.

Both in benchmarking and actual use, the 7 Plus was speedy and reactive in its multitasking capabilities, appeared to perform above expectations.

When benchmarked on AnTuTu (v7.0.2) for example, it recorded a score of 141 374, which is far better than the 54 604 that the impressive LG Q7 mustered when we recently reviewed it.

Helping the 7 Plus achieve such numbers is an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 chipset that clocks at 2.2GHz and 1.8GHz for its respective quad cores.

There’s also a healthy 4GB dollop of RAM to help keep things ticking over nicely, and 64GB onboard storage (microSD card good for up to 256GB).

If you don’t make use of the microSD card space, it can also double as a secondary SIM slot when required.

Above average visuals

Paired with the solid internal specifications are a display and camera setup to match.

The screen is generous at 6.0″ and provides a crisp and clear canvas for users to enjoy the pure Android operating system, which is now the UI standard for the new Nokia Mobile phones.

This particular version of Android is 8.1 (Oreo). In the time we’ve reviewed the 7 Plus, Android Pie has been reaching select devices, but nothing for Nokia ones just yet. That said it likely be one of the first few phones to get an update, if that sort of thing is important to you.

Switching to the rear a dual lens Zeiss-certified setup at work. This pairs a 12MP and 13MP lens, each sporting an f/1.75 and f/2.6 aperture respectively.

This mix yields a good performance while taking pictures outdoors, but we were specifically impressed by the 7 Plus’ low light photography, which comes close to some of the flagship phones we’ve used of late.

As for some of the other important elements, the 7 Plus has a responsive fingerprint sensor on the rear, USB Type-C port for charging and file transfers, and a relatively sizeable 3 800mAh battery that delivered an average of just under 10 hours of battery life during our time with the phone.

For a bigger than normal mid-range smartphone then, the 7 Plus ticks all the necessary boxes.

Final verdict

Whoever is in charge of rolling out these smartphones at Nokia Mobile really seems to know what they’re doing, as the Nokia 7 Plus is yet another in a long line of devices from HMD Global to offer up solid specs, clean design and good all-round performance for a wallet-friendly price.

The 7 Plus in particular appears to live up to the “Plus’ billing, with a generous display, well-sized battery and CPU that punches above its weight.

Yes, there are cheaper options out there in the premium mid-range tier, but the Nokia 7 Plus is able to offer more than most, making it a surprise contender for those wanting to invest in a new phone.



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