Those of you who have been following me for a while now how much I care about design, in phones and in general. It played a huge part in why I became a Nokia fan in the first place. Nokia always had the best phone designs. From the legendary N9, to the memorable Lumia devices, and even way before that.
So I decided to create a couple of sketches that show my dream Nokia phone, and it’s obviously hugely inspired by my favorite Nokia devices of the past. My friend Jermaine who you all should know and follow from his youtube channel concept creator then took my sketches and made them into stunning renders! Huge thanks to him for making this video possible. He also has a new tech-focused channel worth checking out.
For the name, I called it Nokia NX. N for the legendary N series devices of the past, and X in line with their current X series which signifies the future. This would be a series that would focus on design and build as well as imaging, in a package that is more playful and youthful than what we currently have.
For the overall form factor, it was between the 925 with its sandwich design and the N9 and its later evolutions, with a unbody design, rounded edge, and flat top. I went with the latter as it looks cleaner and removes gaps between different elements in a way that looks very pleasing.
Samsung implemented a very similar overall form factor btw but with a sandwich design on its galaxy ultra lineup. I’m slightly biased, but I prefer my version better of course!
For materials, I went with an all-aluminium build, similar to the Nokia E7 which I think is still one of the most solid-feeling devices you will ever get to hold. I also love that cold metallic touch all around. I’m not opposed to plastic in any way, which has plenty of advantages, but public perception is quite important, and using glass on anything other than the display is just downright dumb in my opinion.
I did want to keep my concept slightly realistic, so the top and bottom of my device are made out of matte plastic for antenna reasons. I do understand that it might not be enough for solid reception of course, but I dislike antenna lines. Moment of silence for the clown show we saw with the iPhone 6 and its hideous antenna lines.
You will also notice there is a headphone jack exactly at the top in the center, and I tried to retain some symmetry with the mic hole and pinhole for the SIM slot
On the bottom, you can find the loudspeaker grill, Lumia 1020 style, and a lanyard port, which is a very underrated feature I love having on my phone.
Maybe I should have added another speaker grill at the top for a proper dual-speaker setup… hmm.
On the right, there are the volume rocker keys, the power button which integrates a fingerprint reader, and a textured 2-stage camera shutter key for old times’ sake. This button should be reprogrammable so can be used for gaming or whatever you need it for.
Display & Glass
Now moving on to the front. For display size, I think a 6.3” display for today’s standards hits the sweet spot. It makes the device not comically large, while still offering plenty of screen real estate to enjoy content. For such a device, an OLED 1080p panel would be more than enough resolution, and you can also expect a high refresh rate.
The display glass needs to perfectly blend with the frame of the device, something we have already seen with devices like the Nokia N9 and Lumia 930, so it just curves very slightly near the edges to melt with the rest of the body. The vast majority of the glass would be a display as you can imagine, but there is still a bit of frame around it to protect against drops. It is a Nokia after all, even if it is a pretty one.
I left the best for last, and my favorite aspect of this concept has to be the camera bump on the back. You guys know how much I despise unsymmetrical implementations, including Nokia’s mobiles latest step design, so I was debating whether I should use a circular camera bump or a vertical strip similar to the N9 and 8 Sirocco. And because my dream phone would have a killer camera setup, it will have to protrude outside the body, so a Nokia 9 or Lumia 930 implementation wouldn’t have been possible. I decided to go with a design style inspired by the never released Lumia McLaren. It’s a truly brilliant way of creating a camera bump that doesn’t look like it was added on last minute, with cheap plastic rings around it. No, here the metal back curves upwards almost like the opening of a volcano, and the camera plate is glass that hides all the busy lines and elements, unlike the unsymmetrical mishmash of shapes we see emphasized on today’s phones which just look unsettling at best, hideous at worse.
I wanted to implement a feature I miss dearly on today’s smartphones, and that would be Xenon flash while keeping the design as symmetrical as possible. So it goes right in the middle of the quad camera setup.
For the technical aspects of the camera, it would have to be either a custom sensor with the latest and greatest or the best off-the-shelf option for both the main camera and the ultra-wide camera. I would also add a monochrome sensor, to help capture more light and have a Nokia 9 lit setup by combining the output of multiple cameras, and probably a Zoom lens.
Rest of the specs
The rest of the specs of the device don’t really matter to me that much and would change year over year. Just needs to be able to provide excellent performance, and battery life, and be future-proof.
For software as much as I would love to see MeeGo or Windows Phone back, both are unrealistic options so sadly Android it is. I wouldn’t keep it stock though, as I would create a Nokia-inspired design and look to it at the very least.
Anyway, that that… what do you guys think of my dream Nokia phone? And would you love to see something like this become a reality? Share your thoughts with me in the comments below. I would also love to hear what kind of design or spec features you would have liked to see or change.