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Nokia G10 Unboxing, Review Philippines: Incremental Upgrade?

by Duey Guison  June 22, 2021

Review verdict: You’ll be hard-pressed to find a budget phone that has true stock Android, which is why the Nokia G10 still stands out in the Philippines despite commanding a premium in terms of specs. The processor may not be the best choice for a phone under Php 7k, but the Nokia G10 is still a compelling choice for people who want 2 years of guaranteed Android updates. 

Pros

  • Guaranteed 2 years of major Android updates
  • Improved camera performance vs. its predecessors
  • USB-C port on a budget phone

Cons

  • Not the best processor of choice

Nokia G10 Review Philippines specs

  • Helio G25 processor
  • 4GB RAM
  • 64GB storage
  • 6.5-inch IPS LCD, HD+
  • 13-megapixel f/1.8 main camera with PDAF, 2-megapixel macro, 2-megapixel depth sensor
  • 8-megapixel selfie camera
  • 4G
  • WiFi, Bluetooth 4.2, side-mounted fingerprint scanner, IPx2 rating
  • 5050mAh battery
  • 10w charging
  • Android 11

It has been four years since HMD Global revived the Nokia brand in the smartphone scene, and since then they’ve stuck to their promise of offering guaranteed Android updates to their phones. This promise extends to the budget segment, and the Nokia G10 is their latest effort. As a logical successor to the Nokia 2.4, the Nokia G10 gets modern touches and little niceties to make it stand out in the competitive under Php 7k budget phone segment.

Unboxing and Packaging contents

Instead of a square box, HMD Global shifted to the typical rectangular box for the Nokia G10. Save for the different box shape, all the design elements are similar to their older packaging–Nokia branding, a photo of the phone, key highlights, and a logo highlighting its guaranteed Android updates for two years. Inside the box, you have the usual set of contents: the phone itself (this time with a pre-applied screen protector), silicone case, documentation, SIM ejector tool, headset, 10w charger, and a USB-C cable. You heard that right: USB-C is finally implemented on HMD Global’s more affordable Nokia phones.

Design

The Nokia G10 takes design cues from the Nokia 3.4: the back panel has the same ribbed texture, and you also get a circular camera module that houses three cameras and an LED flash. The module barely protrudes as well, which means it won’t wobble on the table when placed with the screen up. Unlike the Nokia 3.4, the Nokia G10 relocates the fingerprint scanner to the side to give the back panel a cleaner look.

For the display, the Nokia G10 is practically identical to the Nokia 2.4 as you get a 6.5-inch HD+ IPS panel with a dewdrop notch and a rather thick chin with Nokia branding. The port and button layout are the same as well, though this time you are getting USB-C on the Nokia G10–a much-needed upgrade especially for a 2021 budget phone.

Display

Since we are dealing with virtually the same panel used on the Nokia 2.4, our verdict on the Nokia G10’s display is likewise the same: it is decent enough for everyday use, and it is viewable even in direct sunlight. The large screen estate also makes it good for consuming videos–if you don’t mind watching them only in HD resolution.

The same goes for the single bottom-firing speaker: while the mids are clear,  the lows are barely there and the highs are hard to distinguish on certain music genres. Overall, the audio quality is typical of what you expect on a budget phone.

Cameras

The Nokia G10 has the same camera setup as its predecessor, though it adds a 2-megapixel macro snapper for its rear cameras. We are not fans of brands stuffing filler macro cameras on phones, and the same applies to the Nokia G10’s macro snapper.

When it comes to imaging performance, we noticed that the Nokia G10 delivered better colors compared to its predecessor, and we think that this was made possible by an improved post-processing algorithm. The same improvement in post-processing is seen with videos and selfies as well.

 

Internals and Battery Life

Powering the Nokia G10 is an Helio G25 processor that is paired with 4GB RAM and 64GB internal storage. While it has more RAM than its predecessor, there is not much difference between the Helio G25 and the Helio P22 used on the Nokia 2.4–both are 12nm-based octa-core processors that have the same 2Ghz clock speed and the same PowerVR GE8320 GPU. However, our benchmark numbers show that the Helio G25 performs better than the Helio P22 on multi-core tests.

While the Helio G25 is good for day-to-day tasks, its similarities to the Helio P22 mean that is it by no means ideal for gaming. We tried to run Asphalt 9 on the Nokia G10, and load times were frustratingly slow. Aside from that, there are noticeable frame drops and in-game lag while playing a single race and that’s even at low graphics settings.

To make up for that shortcoming, the Nokia G10’s stock Android UI means that it is completely devoid of bloatware out of the box, making the most of the limited processing power of the Helio G25. Being the trendsetter for keeping phones up to date, HMD Global commits to up to 2 years of Android updates to the Nokia G10. That is still very rare on a budget phone, those priced at under Php 10k would barely get one major update or not get any update at all.

As for battery life, the Nokia G10’s 5000mAh cell lasted for a little over 15 hours with our video loop test, which is roughly at par with the battery life we got on the Nokia 2.4 (it lasted under 15 hours with its smaller 4500mAh battery). However, the Nokia G10 is better than its predecessor as it comes with 10w USB-C charging. Charging time is roughly the same with the Nokia 2.4, which is around a little over 3 hours from flat to 100%, due to the bigger battery.

Wrap up and conclusions

Our review of the Nokia G10 in the Philippines shows that it is a good incremental upgrade to the Nokia 2.4 with a more modern look, improved overall camera performance, a bigger battery, and the use of a USB-C port. While its processor is lackluster for a sub-Php 7k phone, the main selling point of the Nokia G10 is its guaranteed 2 years of major Android updates–a commitment we rarely see on any budget phone even up to this day.

Nokia G10 Review Philippines Price

The Nokia G10 is priced at Php 6,990 and is available via Nokia’s official Shopee store.

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