Nokia G42 5G: A Device That Prioritizes Affordability, Sustainability, and Longevity
In a market flooded with flagship models boasting the latest features, Nokia takes a different approach with its G42 5G. The company focuses on offering affordable, sustainable, and long-lasting devices as its selling point. But does the Nokia G42 5G truly deliver a device that customers will want to buy?
Design and Build Quality
The design of the Nokia G42 5G may not win any awards, but it does have its own charm. The textured finish and lavender color of my review unit are quite appealing. The vertically stacked triple camera array on the rear, located on the top left, is accentuated by chrome accent rings around the lenses. The phone feels comfortable in the hand, thanks to the beveled side rails and chamfered edges that slope to the sides. On the left side, there is a dual SIM tray, while the right side houses the volume rocker and power buttons, with the latter also serving as the fingerprint sensor. The bottom edge features a 3.5mm headphone jack, a USB-C port, and two speaker holes.
Durability and Repairability
Nokia emphasizes the durability of the G42 5G, claiming that it has undergone rigorous testing against everyday knocks. The device also stays up-to-date with three years of monthly security updates and two years of OS upgrades, with the latest Android 13 preinstalled. Additionally, Nokia has partnered with iFixit to offer replacement parts for the G42 for five years. The QuickFix repairability feature allows users to replace damaged screens, charging ports, and batteries easily. iFixit kits are available at cost-effective prices starting from €19.95, with detailed guides provided on the iFixit website.
The Nokia G42 5G features a large 6.56-inch IPS LCD display with a 720p resolution and a smooth 90Hz refresh rate. While a higher resolution would have been expected at this price point, the lower resolution helps conserve battery life. Although there is a slight loss of clarity in some areas, such as small text, it is not a significant drawback. The contrast and color vibrancy may appear weak, even for an LCD panel.
The main rear camera of the Nokia G42 5G boasts a 50MP sensor and an f/1.8 aperture lens. The other two cameras, a 2MP depth sensor and a 2MP macro sensor, are less significant. The 8MP selfie camera is suitable for video calls with decent image quality. The camera app is user-friendly, although it can be a bit sluggish at times, especially when processing HDR, night, and portrait mode photos. The main lens captures good images in well-lit conditions, and the night mode performs better than expected. The device also offers a tripod mode for capturing images with long exposures. Video capture is limited to 1080p at up to 60fps, with average quality.
Hardware and Performance
Nokia claims that the G42 5G delivers a battery life of up to three days, and in my experience, the 5,000mAh battery easily lasts for two long days of use, depending on usage patterns. The device does not come with a charger, only a USB-C cable, and supports up to 20W charging but lacks wireless charging. Powered by a Snapdragon 480+ chipset, the G42 5G performs adequately in real-world use, although it may not excel in benchmarks. Gaming performance is weak, making it suitable only for casual gaming. The device offers a choice between 4GB or 6GB of RAM, with the 6GB variant being the better option. Combined with the potential utilization of up to 5GB of virtual RAM from the 128GB storage, the G42 5G can handle demanding tasks.
The Nokia G42 5G impresses with its affordability, longevity, and solid performance. While the design may not be standout, it offers comfort and repairability. The cameras and display are decent, but it is the device’s performance, battery life, repairability, and software support that truly stand out.
The Nokia G42 5G is available in So Purple and So Grey color options, with a 6/128GB storage and memory configuration priced at €249. It is also available in a 4/128GB storage and memory configuration through Vodafone and Eir for €199.