It’s all glass with a premium dual-tone anodised frame. You will find two distinct metal embellishments on the rear of the device for the fingerprint sensor and the primary camera. We particularly like the Iron colour variant that’s more akin to a deep burgundy or plum. It’s comforting to note that the 8.1 has retained the conventional 3.5 mm headphone jack. The device looks and feels like a premium device in your hands.
At its heart is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 710 Processor that teams up with 4GB of RAM. The POCO F1 and the ASUS ZenFone 5Z are both powered by Qualcomm’s top-of-the-line Snapdragon 845 Processor. The Nokia 8.1 doesn’t disappoint in the performance department though. It handled multi-tasking and intense gaming (including PUBG) without a fuss or lags during our tests. The device comes with 64GB memory onboard (128GB would have been ideal for a device in this segment). You can extend the memory through a hybrid SIM slot, but you will have to sacrifice your second SIM card though.
The 6.18-inch Full-HD+ display (1080 x 2280 pixels / 408 PPI) with a wide notch gets a boost with Nokia’s HDR10 support and a 96% colour gamut. Colours are truly vivid even under direct sunlight. The camera set up features a 20MP selfie camera and a dual rear cam (12MP + 13MP) with Carl Zeiss optics. The camera shoots decent images in ambient light but struggles in lowlight. It’s the one thing that hampers this device’s flagship killer status. But there’s a lot to like about the Nokia 8.1 if you’re not hung up on lowlight photography — a vibrant display, an elegant form factor, the Android One Platform (that guarantees the latest software updates) and a solid battery (3600 mAh) that won’t let you down. (Costs Rs 26,999)
Shut out all external sounds; nothing comes between you and your favourite music with Sony’s new noise-cancelling Bluetooth headphones. Sony brings the same capabilities from its premium headphones to a sub Rs 15,000 pair with its Artificial Intelligence Noise Cancellation (AINC) technology. All you have to do is hit the dedicated NC button. You can hook up with Android (they are optimised for Google Assistant) and Apple devices instantly via NFC connectivity.
Sony’s dedicated companion App allows you to customise the audio and equaliser settings. A metal slider allows you to adjust your headphones to the perfect size while the soft earpads are perfect for hours of comfortable listening. The swivel design makes it easy to slip it into your slimmest backpack while the 35-hour battery life (for each charging cycle) make this the ideal travel companion. (Rs 12,990)
— Ashwin is a lifestyle writer and consumer technology expert. Catch the latest digital and tech updates in this weekly column