Nothing’s first smartphone, the appropriately named Phone (1), will be revealed on July 12. The “Return to Instinct” event will be held live in London where the company is based and livestreamed on its website starting at 10 a.m. BST / 11 a.m. ET / 8 a.m. PT.
The tech startup sent the below teaser image to Input with an image of what’s clearly a parrot’s back/wings. What does a parrot have to do with the Phone (1)? Probably nothing. The company has used insects in its marketing imagery for its Ear (1) wireless earbuds. Why? I’ve heard because it “looks cool.” Hey, we’re all for different here at Input (*looks around at our website design*).
The Phone (1) will be the second product from Nothing and founder Carl Pei (formerly of OnePlus). Last summer, Nothing released the Ear (1) wireless earbuds designed by the tech geniuses at Teenage Engineering.
Resembling AirPods Pro, the semi-transparent Ear (1) launched to great hype — and fell short on delivery, despite outpricing rival wireless earbuds at $99.99. In my Ear (1) review, I said I was disappointed by the buggy hardware and software. Nothing later seemingly fixed many of the connectivity issues on its Ear (1) Black Edition.
For Nothing’s sophomore release, it’s releasing the Phone (1), an Android smartphone that’s running a customized version of Android called Nothing OS.
Phone (1) tech specs and what we know
Confirmed Phone (1) tech specs
Though all will (hopefully) be announced on July 12, there are some things we know about the Phone (1)’s hardware. Nothing’s Twitter account confirmed the below tech specs:
- Recycled aluminum mid-frame
- Transparent back
- Wireless charging
- Reverse wireless charg
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 778G+ chip
- Dual rear cameras
- No chin
Pei exclusively confirmed to Input the Phone (1) will be powered by a mid-range Qualcomm Snapdragon 778G+ chip. Pei said the decision to go with the 778G+ chip instead of the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip came down to performance, power consumption, and cost.
What will the Phone (1) look like?
In March, Nothing shred the below teaser image showing several line symbols. We now know that they are called the “Glyph interface” and correspond to the camera, antenna wireless charging coil, wired USB-C charging port.
Prior to the reveal of the Phone (1) design, phone leaker and concept artist Ben Geskin mocked up a 3D concept of his interpretation of the teaser outline and it sort of lines up:
Geskin came pretty close. The final see-through Phone (1) design, however, doesn’t go quite to the extremes as some the sketches that inspired it:
Peep closer, and you’ll see on the far right there are some digits suggesting that the Phone (1) might come with a 64-megapixel camera and display with a 90Hz refresh rate. All speculation, of course.
“Most consumers are not going to be able to tell the difference between a 90Hz display or a 60Hz one, or OLED or LCD. They don’t really know what optimizations we’ve done on the software. Consumers like really glitzy things they can quickly understand.”
Take that for what you will.
On June 13, Nothing shared the below tease on Twitter showing two more birds (Blue Budgie parakeets) sitting atop a sliver of the Phone (1):
The tweet reads “Curious? So are they.” Let’s enhance the Phone (1) teaser to see what we’re looking at:
There are a couple of things we can see here: the aluminum band with antenna cutouts (almost certainly for 5G, because what phone would release without 5G in 2022?), a portion of the camera, and a look at some of the screws and ribbon cables for other phone components.
The image confirms the symbols and shapes as corresponding to the different Phone (1) tech components. There’s a “C” in the upper left corner that wraps around the dual cameras. As predicted, the Phone (1) has dual and not triple cameras. What combo will that be? Main wide lens + telephoto lens? Or main wide lens + ultrawide lens?
YouTuber Marques Brownlee shared a video of the Phone (1), confirming the Glyph symbols on the rear light up and can be mapped for custom notifications; there are even custom sounds.
In its “Preparing for phone (1) ft. Carl Pei | Nothing Series #1” video, you can see a glimpse of the Phone (1) in Pe’s hand right at the 14:47 mark.
What does the Phone (1)’s Nothing OS look like?
Our own Ian Carlos Campbell installed the Nothing Launcher beta on a Google Pixel 6 and, well, it's definitely a beta alright. He called the custom ringtones and wallpaper “pretty cool” but overall “Nothing’s launcher comes with its fair share of missing features.”
Below are a few screenshots of the Nothing OS.
And here’s a screenshot of the Recorder app, clearly drawing inspiration from Teenage Engineering’s iconic OP-1 portable synthesizer (recently updated as the OP-1 Field).
Will the Phone (1) launch in the U.S.?
Unfortunately, that’s a hard no. Nothing says it’s not releasing the Phone (1) in the U.S. and will instead focus on the UK and European markets. India is a rumored launch region, too, though it hasn’t been confirmed.
How much will the Phone (1) cost?
That’s a good question and we hope Nothing has a good price come July 12. A rumor from Allround-PC claims the Phone (1) will cost under $500.
Pei has downplayed smartphone tech specs before. The last phone he worked on before leaving OnePlus in 2020, the Nord, was a mid-range Android phone with a midrange Snapdragon chip.
Which carriers will sell the Phone (1)?
Pei has only confirmed O2 for the UK. “Let’s make the phone (1) launch a memorable one,” he tweeted, tagging Gareth Turpin, Chief Commercial Officer, Mobile at Virgin Media O2.
How to watch the Phone (1) livestream
Right on YouTube. Here’s the livestream video. Bookmark it so you don’t forget.
What will the Phone (1) packaging look like?
I sure hope it’s as nice as the Ear (1) unboxing experience. The exterior tear and the silver box inside leaves a strong impression.
What do NFTs have to do with the Phone (1)?
On July 5, Nothing tweeted out a cryptic message about “Black Dot NFTs” and didn’t further expand on that. For now, we have to wait to see what NFTs and the blockchain have to do with the Phone (1).
What is the Ear Stick (1)?
A leak suggests Nothing might announce a new pair of wireless earbuds called the Ear Stick (1). The design of the case looks like the shape of a lipstick. There are also some subtle design changes to the transparent earbuds. This is a rumor so take it with a grain of salt. Images can be easily faked.
This article was originally published on