HMD Global reveals three new budget Nokia phones with Android 11 Go

HMD Global reveals three new budget Nokia phones with Android 11 Go

HMD Global has been selling Nokia-branded Android phones for years at this point, though in recent history, it has started to slip behind with software support. That isn’t stopping the company from making even more phones, and now there are three more budget devices on the way: the Nokia C21 Plus, Nokia C21, and Nokia C 2nd Edition.

HMD Global says the Nokia C series has already amounted to 16% of the company’s total smartphone sales in the last five years, even though the lineup has only been around for two years. There’s a decent level of demand for these phones, which is apparently why HMD is announcing three more at the same time.

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Specification Nokia C21 Plus Nokia C21 Nokia C2 2nd Edition
Build “Dark Cyan” and “Warm Grey” colors “Dark Blue” and “Warm Grey” colors “Dark Blue” and “Warm Grey” colors
Dimensions & Weight
  • 164.8 x 75.9 x 8.55 mm
  • 178 g (4000 mAh)
  • 191 g (5050 mAh)
  • 169.9 x 77.9 x 8.8 mm
  • 195 g
  • 153.95 x 75.9 x 9.55 mm
  • 180 g
Display 6.5-inch “HD+” 20:9 6.5-inch “HD+” 20:9 5.7″ 480 x 960 18:9
SoC
  • Unisoc SC9863A
  • 8-core, up to 1.6GHz
  • Unisoc SC9863A
  • 8-core, up to 1.6GHz
Unspecified 4-core 1.5GHz SoC
RAM & Storage
  • 2/3/4GB RAM
  • 32/64GB internal storage
  • microSD card slot (up to 256GB)
  • 2/3GB RAM
  • 32/64GB internal storage
  • microSD card slot (up to 256GB)
  • 1/2GB
  • 32GB internal storage
  • microSD card slot (up to 256GB)
Battery & Charging
  • 4,000/5,050mAh battery
  • 10W wired charging
  • 3,000mAh battery
  • 5W charging
  • 2,400mAh battery
  • 5W charging
Security
  • Fingerprint sensor
  • Face unlock
  • Fingerprint sensor
  • Face unlock
  • Fingerprint sensor
  • Face unlock
Rear Camera(s)
  • 13MP main camera
  • 2MP depth sensor
8MP 8MP
Front Camera(s) 5MP 5MP 5MP
Ports
  • microUSB (USB 2.0)
  • 3.5mm audio jack
  • microUSB (USB 2.0)
  • 3.5mm audio jack
  • microUSB (USB 2.0)
  • 3.5mm audio jack
Connectivity
  • 4G LTE CAT4
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n (Wi-Fi 4)
  • Bluetooth 4.2
  • GPS/AGPS
  • 4G LTE CAT4
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n (Wi-Fi 4)
  • Bluetooth 4.2
  • GPS/AGPS
  • 4G LTE CAT4
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n (Wi-Fi 4)
  • Bluetooth 5.0
  • GPS/AGPS
Software Android 11 Go Edition Android 11 Go Edition Android 11 Go Edition
Other Features
  • IP52 splash/dust resistance
  • Two years of quarterly security updates
  • FM radio (wired only)
  • Two years of quarterly security updates
  • FM radio (wired only)
  • Two years of quarterly security updates
  • Removable battery
  • FM radio (wired + wireless)

First up is the Nokia C21 Plus, which is the best out of the three phones. It’s still a low-end budget device, with a Unisoc SC9863A chipset, two rear cameras (though one of them is just a depth sensor), IP52 splash/dust resistance, a 6.5-inch “HD+” screen (presumably 720p with added height), and a microUSB connector instead of USB Type-C. Even though USB Type-C is a better connector, these phones will likely be sold in countries where microUSB is still the norm.

The rest of the hardware will likely vary by country and model, with anywhere from 2-4GB RAM, 32-64GB of internal storage, and a battery capacity of 4,000 or 5,050mAh. On the bright side, there is a headphone jack and FM radio, which you won’t find on most flagship phones at this point.

Next is the regular Nokia C21, which drops the battery capacity to 3,000mAh, and also reduces the charging speed to just 5W — it’s gonna take a while to fully charge this phone. There’s also only one rear camera, at least according to the press release and specification sheet, but there are two camera holes. Either the announcement is wrong, or this phone has a fake camera.

The Nokia C 2nd Edition is the last of the bunch (pictured at the top), which is one of the worst product names for a smartphone I’ve heard in recent history. It has a smaller 5.7-inch display that is only 480p, 1-2GB RAM, 32GB of internal storage, and a 2,400mAh battery (with the same slow 5W charging). HMD wouldn’t even say what chipset this phone uses, only that it’s another Unisec SoC with four cores.

Even though these are all budget devices, these phones are about as low-power as you can get and still technically run Android. HMD also didn’t mention pricing or exact availability for any of these phones, but the Nokia C20 Plus was originally priced at ₹11,099 in India, which is around $148. HMD has never sold its C-series phones in the United States, so these new models likely won’t be available in the US either.

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Corbin Davenport
Corbin Davenport

Corbin is a tech journalist and software developer. Check out what he's up to at corbin.io.

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