Not really fond of those Android brands from China that are flooding the market right now. Name your pick. I mean, I know a lot of people are getting these phones. What with the features they come loaded with such as bigger screens, modern cameras for the photo-minded, fingerprint scanners, while all that plus more for a cheaper price tag. Who would not be tempted?
Count. Me. Out.
Dare I say, I would not wish to be caught dead with one of those clutched in my hand, nor would I want to touch one not even with a 20-foot pole.
Alas, it is very hard to find the right phones nowadays that are affordable, at the same time are NOT one of those China brands (or at least not made in China).
What about Samsung? LG? ASUS? You ask. Well, I know. But I wanted to try something different.
I have had my run with Samsung for the last 5+ years. When Samsung released the Note 2, I excitedly went out and got one for myself as soon as it reached the shores of Singapore. While it lasted for years until it suddenly died on me late last year, I was not too happy with it really. Which prompted me to buy another phone when my Note 2 was still only a year old.
Then I have had 2 LG phones. Definitely, I was happier with this brand. One was the LG Optimus One. My first ever Android phone which to this day is still alive and kicking, although it has been on CyanogenMod for quite some time now. Though tiny by today’s standards it feels solid and durable. Truly a tough bastard.
The second LG phone is Google’s Nexus 5. It was cheaper by half the price compared to my Note 2. And… Smaller. Slimmer. Faster. It had a more updated Android OS (and kept on getting updates until support ended). Again, the screen gave up finally last year too (It seems 2018 was not a good year for me and my smartphones). To be fair I dropped it by accident on the asphalt with the bottom part of the screen broken, and it had been that way for 3 years or so, until it eventually went dark for good.
ASUS phones do not really appeal to me although I have read a lot of good things about it. Of course there is the Google Pixel. These are freaking expensive!
As I have said, I wanted to get something else. Then there is the subject of availability. (Did I mention it must be under PHP18k also? Because based on experience and usage, I really just need my phone for calls, messages, browsing the web, reading news, listening to music, watching movies/videos and getting around places. Rarely on games.)
With those 4 out of the way, all-in-all, I am left with options close to none outside of those that are not China brands. It seems like it is not even possible anymore to have one that are not manufactured there. Even the venerable iPhone is made in China. With a designed in California, US of A, label printed on its back.
Except there is one more. Yes, it may not be not made in China. At least it is from a Finnish company. And taking cue from that famous fruity brand, their phones were “designed in Finland” as so labeled at the back of each one. The clincher is that the brand name is from one of the most memorable and recognizable brands and manufacturers of mobile phones since way back.
And that would be the Nokia.
So, I opted for the Nokia 6.1 Plus in particular.
Purchased way back in December of 2018. Honestly I was forced to buy earlier than I would have wanted to. My Samsung Note 2 was bricked for no apparent reason all of a sudden. It just stopped working. But, having read about Nokia’s Android phones, I did have my sights on either the Nokia 6.1 Plus or the Nokia 7.1 Plus months before I bought one. Only that I did not want to get one at the end of the year last year, yet.
As for why not the 7.1 Plus, it all has to do with the bigger screen. No more of that for me. I prefer a more compact phone akin to my Nexus 5.
Lastly, I favor the Android One operating system version that comes installed with the Nokia Android phones. It is closest to the stock Android version by Google. I want it plain and simple. As vanilla as it could get.
Fancy UI layers, or replacements, that a lot of these Android brands come with while full of bells and whistles, in my experience, are slow-ish and tend to get sluggish over time. One other point of contention is these big brands have their own apps that cannot be uninstalled from the system by default. Not only are these taking up precious space, they are also redundant and of no use to me.