Roland Quandt from WinFuture yesterday broke the Internet, at least the Nokiasphere, with the new info about the upcoming Nokia flagship. We already heard from Nokibar sources from Baidu that HMD is working on a “Penta-lens” device and under-screen fingerprint sensor was also mentioned. Roland got his hands on some documentation confirming the part about the underscreen fingerprint sensor and stating that the document mentions a “high-risk” camera, whatever that means.
From Roland’s story yesterday till today a lot of new, unconfirmed info surfaced on the web. As always, we cannot guarantee that the info is correct, so treat it as a rumor.
First we have a user on Nokibar forum stating that Nokia 10 “engineering machine”, which I guess are prototypes, arrived in China. I guess the user is a HMD employee, because he said that he cannot share the photos or details because of possible legal repercussions. Foxconn employees usually share photos and details. ;). Of course, this could be fake news, but it comes at a time when a trusted source of news like WinFuture run a story about an upcoming Nokia flagship.
The Nokia community in Russia, Nokia Anew, also received new info from their soruce about the upcoming devices, that they shared with the readership of NokiaMob – thanks for that. 🙂 Nokia Anew’s source did provide good info in the past, first mentioning the soon launch of Nokia 3.1 and 5.1, and sharing other details that we still cannot confirm like an internal quarrel inside HMD about the global launch of Nokia X6. Their source also provided a, what turned out to be a bad info, and that was that HMD decided to exclusively use Snapdragon processors. Anyways, the correct info outnumbers the one bad info so lets hear what comes from Russia with love.
According to Nokia Anew’s source, HMD is preparing to launch two Snapdragon 845 powered flagship devices for the 2018 release. Both smartphones WON’T feature the notch, but will have small bezels (probably the size like on the Galaxy S9). First flagship should be a spiritual successor to the Nokia 8 that could be called Nokia 9, while the second should feature better specifications (and my guess is it will be called Nokia 10 – we heard something about Nokia 10 long time ago) and differ from the “junior” model, apart from the same SoC. The “junior” is allegedly pretty close pictured down below, on a sketch from Nokibar months ago.
Both smartphones, the “smaller” and “bigger” Snapdragon 845 powered flagships should come with a penta-lens camera configuration.
Recently, Nokia Anew also shared that the “penta-lens” camera project was in question, but it seems that possible techincal issues have been solved now. This could also explain why the document obtained by WinFuture.de reffers to the camera as “high risk”.
On Twitter, user DewsyHUN from Hungarian AndroidBit.net suggested that the “penta-lens” camera was co-developed with a small company called Light.co. Light.co is a US-based startup that created the Light L16 Camera, that features 16 individual camera sensors with different characteristics that offer taking pictures of up to 52MP in size, 5 times optical zoom and “Precise depth-of-field control”. This reminds me of Pelican Imaging, a startup in which Nokia invested (over NGP) some time ago and was later sold to Tessera.
Such a configuration is an overkill on mobile (or anywhere, in fact), but things get interesting after digging a bit deeper about Light.co. One of the investors in the startup is Foxconn’s FIH Mobile, HMD’s exclusive manufacturing partner. And the things get even more interesting after reading this article from Forbes, where it is stated that Foxconn can “resell Light’s camera technology to any of Foxconn’s customers”. Maybe it’s not business related, but it could be important on a sentimental level – the co-founder of Light.co, Dave Grannan, held jobs at Sprint and Nokia.
These are all speculations about the Light.co Technology involvement, and let’s not forget that ZEISS also has different camera solutions for mobile in mind. With HMD opening their new R&D office in China, where camera is a priority, we could really see devices that could compete with the best the competition offers.
I don’t want to get yours or mine hopes too high, but the nearest event where we could see HMD’s new flagships is rumored to be at IFA2018 in Berlin (31 August – 5 September). I’m not sure if all or any of the info mentioned above is true (that why rumors in the title are squared :)), so let’s stay calm and see how the situation will develop.
Thanks Amal for the tips. 😀