Nokia 5 Review

Introduction


The Nokia brand is back on the smartphone stage. HMD Global, the company which now develops and markets phones under the iconic name, has already introduced three Android-powered, budget-friendly handsets: the entry-level Nokia 3, the mid-range Nokia 6, and the Nokia 5, which we'll examine in the paragraphs that follow.

As its name suggests, the Nokia 5 occupies the space between HMD's other two Android phones. It is not as cheap as the Nokia 3 or as well-equipped as the Nokia 6, but it comes with a metal body, it offers a convenient fingerprint scanner, and it flaunts a 5.2-inch display. And at a price of just €190 (~$220), perhaps the Nokia 5 is worthy of attention. Let's see if that's the case.

Design


The design of the Nokia 5 is definitely one of its strong points – it has a premium feel thanks to its all-metal body. This sensation is further amplified by the rounded sides and corners which make the device very comfortable to hold. Weighing in at 160g (5.64 oz), the handset also feels quite sturdy, somehow reminding us of the Nokia phones from the good old days.

Nokia 5 Review
Nokia 5 Review
Nokia 5 Review
Nokia 5 Review

The power and volume keys are clicky and responsive. The fingerprint scanner embedded in the home button is truly a welcome addition at this price point and is generally reliable, although not the fastest.

At the very bottom you'll find a microUSB port, not the more modern USB Type-C one, which means that you won't get the convenience of using a reversible charging cable. Meanwhile, the 3.5mm audio jack is situated at the top.

The handset doesn't have any sort of water protection, so keep that in mind.

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Front view | Side view
Nokia 5
Nokia 5
5.89 x 2.85 x 0.32 inches
149.7 x 72.5 x 8.05 mm
5.64 oz (160 g)

Nokia 5

Motorola Moto G5
Motorola Moto G5
5.68 x 2.87 x 0.37 inches
144.3 x 73. x 9.5 mm
5.13 oz (146 g)

Motorola Moto G5

Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017)
Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017)
5.33 x 2.61 x 0.31 inches
135.4 x 66.2 x 7.9 mm
4.87 oz (138 g)

Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017)

Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016)
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016)
5.74 x 2.85 x 0.32 inches
145.8 x 72.3 x 8.1 mm
5.57 oz (158 g)

Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016)




Display


The Nokia 5 comes with a 5.2-inch 720p IPS LCD display. This translates to a rather low pixel density of 282ppi. Obviously, the screen isn't the sharpest on the market, but some corners had to be cut for the _phone_ to sell at less than €200.

Nokia 5 Review

Fortunately, this is pretty much where the bad news end. The maximum and minimum brightness levels respectively stand at 598 and 2 nits, ensuring good readability in both sunny and dark environments. The fact that the display is polarized should further improve outdoor legibility. With a color temperature of 7400K, whites appear slightly bluer than intended, but the overall color reproduction isn't too out of whack and is much, much better than what can be seen on the Nokia 3.

Display measurements and quality

Maximum brightness (nits)Higher is better Minimum brightness (nits)Lower is better Contrast Higher is better Color temperature (Kelvins) Gamma Delta E rgbcmy Lower is better Delta E grayscale Lower is better
Nokia 5 598
(Excellent)
2
(Excellent)
1:1137
(Good)
7435
(Good)
2.26
2.3
(Good)
6.42
(Average)
Motorola Moto G5 604
(Excellent)
4
(Excellent)
1:1340
(Excellent)
7080
(Good)
2.12
3.15
(Good)
3.11
(Good)
Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) 440
(Good)
1
(Excellent)
unmeasurable
(Excellent)
6826
(Excellent)
2.01
2.4
(Good)
6.49
(Average)
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016) 300
(Average)
3
(Excellent)
unmeasurable
(Excellent)
6746
(Excellent)
1.98
3.35
(Good)
6.41
(Average)
View all

The CIE 1931 xy color gamut chart represents the set (area) of colors that a display can reproduce, with the sRGB colorspace (the highlighted triangle) serving as reference. The chart also provides a visual representation of a display's color accuracy. The small squares across the boundaries of the triangle are the reference points for the various colors, while the small dots are the actual measurements. Ideally, each dot should be positioned on top of its respective square. The 'x: CIE31' and 'y: CIE31' values in the table below the chart indicate the position of each measurement on the chart. 'Y' shows the luminance (in nits) of each measured color, while 'Target Y' is the desired luminance level for that color. Finally, 'ΔE 2000' is the Delta E value of the measured color. Delta E values of below 2 are ideal.

These measurements are made using SpectraCal's CalMAN calibration software.

The Color accuracy chart gives an idea of how close a display's measured colors are to their referential values. The first line holds the measured (actual) colors, while the second line holds the reference (target) colors. The closer the actual colors are to the target ones, the better.

These measurements are made using SpectraCal's CalMAN calibration software.

The Grayscale accuracy chart shows whether a display has a correct white balance (balance between red, green and blue) across different levels of grey (from dark to bright). The closer the Actual colors are to the Target ones, the better.

These measurements are made using SpectraCal's CalMAN calibration software.

View all


Nokia 5 Review

Introduction


The Nokia brand is back on the smartphone stage. HMD Global, the company which now develops and markets phones under the iconic name, has already introduced three Android-powered, budget-friendly handsets: the entry-level Nokia 3, the mid-range Nokia 6, and the Nokia 5, which we'll examine in the paragraphs that follow.

As its name suggests, the Nokia 5 occupies the space between HMD's other two Android phones. It is not as cheap as the Nokia 3 or as well-equipped as the Nokia 6, but it comes with a metal body, it offers a convenient fingerprint scanner, and it flaunts a 5.2-inch display. And at a price of just €190 (~$220), perhaps the Nokia 5 is worthy of attention. Let's see if that's the case.

Design


The design of the Nokia 5 is definitely one of its strong points – it has a premium feel thanks to its all-metal body. This sensation is further amplified by the rounded sides and corners which make the device very comfortable to hold. Weighing in at 160g (5.64 oz), the handset also feels quite sturdy, somehow reminding us of the Nokia phones from the good old days.

Nokia 5 Review
Nokia 5 Review
Nokia 5 Review
Nokia 5 Review

The power and volume keys are clicky and responsive. The fingerprint scanner embedded in the home button is truly a welcome addition at this price point and is generally reliable, although not the fastest.

At the very bottom you'll find a microUSB port, not the more modern USB Type-C one, which means that you won't get the convenience of using a reversible charging cable. Meanwhile, the 3.5mm audio jack is situated at the top.

The handset doesn't have any sort of water protection, so keep that in mind.


Front view | Side view
Nokia 5
Nokia 5
5.89 x 2.85 x 0.32 inches
149.7 x 72.5 x 8.05 mm
5.64 oz (160 g)

Nokia 5

Motorola Moto G5
Motorola Moto G5
5.68 x 2.87 x 0.37 inches
144.3 x 73. x 9.5 mm
5.13 oz (146 g)

Motorola Moto G5

Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017)
Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017)
5.33 x 2.61 x 0.31 inches
135.4 x 66.2 x 7.9 mm
4.87 oz (138 g)

Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017)

Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016)
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016)
5.74 x 2.85 x 0.32 inches
145.8 x 72.3 x 8.1 mm
5.57 oz (158 g)

Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016)




Display


The Nokia 5 comes with a 5.2-inch 720p IPS LCD display. This translates to a rather low pixel density of 282ppi. Obviously, the screen isn't the sharpest on the market, but some corners had to be cut for the _phone_ to sell at less than €200.

Nokia 5 Review

Fortunately, this is pretty much where the bad news end. The maximum and minimum brightness levels respectively stand at 598 and 2 nits, ensuring good readability in both sunny and dark environments. The fact that the display is polarized should further improve outdoor legibility. With a color temperature of 7400K, whites appear slightly bluer than intended, but the overall color reproduction isn't too out of whack and is much, much better than what can be seen on the Nokia 3.

Display measurements and quality

Maximum brightness (nits)Higher is better Minimum brightness (nits)Lower is better Contrast Higher is better Color temperature (Kelvins) Gamma Delta E rgbcmy Lower is better Delta E grayscale Lower is better
Nokia 5 598
(Excellent)
2
(Excellent)
1:1137
(Good)
7435
(Good)
2.26
2.3
(Good)
6.42
(Average)
Motorola Moto G5 604
(Excellent)
4
(Excellent)
1:1340
(Excellent)
7080
(Good)
2.12
3.15
(Good)
3.11
(Good)
Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) 440
(Good)
1
(Excellent)
unmeasurable
(Excellent)
6826
(Excellent)
2.01
2.4
(Good)
6.49
(Average)
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016) 300
(Average)
3
(Excellent)
unmeasurable
(Excellent)
6746
(Excellent)
1.98
3.35
(Good)
6.41
(Average)
View all

The CIE 1931 xy color gamut chart represents the set (area) of colors that a display can reproduce, with the sRGB colorspace (the highlighted triangle) serving as reference. The chart also provides a visual representation of a display's color accuracy. The small squares across the boundaries of the triangle are the reference points for the various colors, while the small dots are the actual measurements. Ideally, each dot should be positioned on top of its respective square. The 'x: CIE31' and 'y: CIE31' values in the table below the chart indicate the position of each measurement on the chart. 'Y' shows the luminance (in nits) of each measured color, while 'Target Y' is the desired luminance level for that color. Finally, 'ΔE 2000' is the Delta E value of the measured color. Delta E values of below 2 are ideal.

These measurements are made using SpectraCal's CalMAN calibration software.

The Color accuracy chart gives an idea of how close a display's measured colors are to their referential values. The first line holds the measured (actual) colors, while the second line holds the reference (target) colors. The closer the actual colors are to the target ones, the better.

These measurements are made using SpectraCal's CalMAN calibration software.

The Grayscale accuracy chart shows whether a display has a correct white balance (balance between red, green and blue) across different levels of grey (from dark to bright). The closer the Actual colors are to the Target ones, the better.

These measurements are made using SpectraCal's CalMAN calibration software.

View all


Interface and performance


Nokia 5 Review

HMD's Nokia smartphones come with an almost stock version of Android. This is done to ensure a bloat-free experience and, no less importantly, timely updates. The Nokia 5 ships with Android Nougat 7.1.1 out of the box, and our unit currently has the latest Android security patch installed. You won't find many other up-to-date budget Android phones. Many users will undoubtedly appreciate this, and we certainly hope that the practice continues in the future.

Performance-wise, there's nothing to write home about. The handset packs the octa-core Snapdragon 430 chipset clocked at 1.4 GHz coupled with 2GB of RAM. Cruising through the home screen and proprietary apps like Contacts or Messaging is generally smooth, but booting up Facebook and scrolling around or browsing a photo gallery does cause the phone to stutter. This can also be observed in Chrome on certain occasions. Loading times can also be dreadful, especially on more demanding games. At the end of the day, you get what you pay for.

Taking advantage of the microSD expansion slot would be a good idea, as the Android system occupies almost half of the 16GB of internal storage.

Performance benchmarks

AnTuTu
Higher is better
Nokia 5 45534
Motorola Moto G5 45621.66
Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) 45938
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016) 28513
JetStream
Higher is better
Nokia 5 21.819
Motorola Moto G5 21.060
Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) 23.803
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016) 17.261
GFXBench T-Rex HD on-screen
Higher is better
Nokia 5 20
Motorola Moto G5 14.33
Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) 19
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016) 9.33
GFXBench Manhattan on-screen
Higher is better
Nokia 5 10
Motorola Moto G5 4.5
Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) 7.3
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016) 3.9
Basemark OS II
Higher is better
Nokia 5 957.33
Motorola Moto G5 801.33
Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) 993
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016) 555.66
Geekbench 4 single-core
Higher is better
Nokia 5 691.66
Motorola Moto G5 621.66
Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) 674.33
Geekbench 4 multi-core
Higher is better
Nokia 5 2895.33
Motorola Moto G5 2566.33
Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) 3224
View all

Camera


The Nokia 5 sports a single 13MP f/2.0 main shooter with Dual-LED flash and phase-detection autofocus, as well as an 8MP front-facing camera. On paper, the setup does seem adequate, but real-life use shows that it doesn't always deliver the goods.

Nokia 5 Review

We were able to capture some decent shots with the main cam on certain occasions, but some of our pictures turned out a little overexposed. The dynamic range isn't stellar either, which is why highlights in certain scenes are brighter than they should be. Low-light photos appear noisy and aren't sharp, while the camera app itself is a bit too basic.

Things are better with the front camera. It is capable of producing some accurate shots and has autofocus, which is great for a phone in this price segment. The feature has been added to help produce sharper selfies, and the results are more than satisfactory.


Camera speed

Taking a pic (sec)Lower is better Taking an HDR pic (sec)Lower is better CamSpeed score Higher is better CamSpeed score with flash Higher is better
Nokia 5 2.3
4.6
594
575
Motorola Moto G5 2
2.6
800
570
Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) 2
2.7
365
210
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016) 3.1
No data
482
266
View all

Video recording


We were pleasantly surprised by the video recording capabilities of this handset. There's no 4K on board which is understandable, but shooting in 1080p is quite enjoyable, and video quality is good overall. Still, there isn't any stabilization of any sort, so some videos might appear shaky, and even though autofocusing is generally fast, faster-moving objects tend to give it a hard time.


Multimedia


The Nokia 5 won't be taking the "Best phone for multimedia" prize, but it's not too horrible of a performer. The 720p display does the job for gaming and YouTube videos, but watching full-length movies might be a bit of a stretch.

The single speaker located on the bottom is sufficiently loud but depth is certainly lacking. As we mentioned earlier, there is a 3.5mm audio jack present on the top, but you might want to avoid using the earphones that ship with the handset, as they are rather uncomfortable.

Audio output

Loudspeaker loudness (dB)
Higher is better
Nokia 5 74
Motorola Moto G5 81
Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) 77
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016) 77
View all


Call quality and connectivity


The Nokia 5 is a bit of a mixed bag in terms of call quality. Voices coming out of the earpiece speaker can be a bit distorted, which means that you could potentially have trouble understanding your callers when you’re in a noisy environment. However, the microphone is actually pretty decent, so your callers will be able to hear you clearly.

All European LTE bands are supported on this mid-ranger but don't count on getting 4G if you live in the USA. Still, a North American version of the phone could very well emerge soon, as HMD has stated that it plans to release all of its devices globally.

As for connectivity options, you get a standard package: Bluetooth 4.1, NFC, GPS, 2.4 and 5GHz Wi-Fi, and so on.

Battery


Nokia 5 Review

There's a 3,000mAh battery powering the Nokia 5. It managed to last 8 hours and 18 minutes when put through our custom test, and it will probably get you a day and a half between charges in real life. This is a pretty decent score, but we must mention that there are a good number of handsets at this price range offering a superior battery life.

Also, there's room for improvement with charging speeds, as it takes 141 minutes for the Nokia 5 to go from 0 to 100%.

Battery Benchmarks

Battery life (hours)
Higher is better
Nokia 5 8h 18 min (Excellent)
Motorola Moto G5 7h 33 min (Good)
Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) 11h 4 min (Excellent)
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016) 8h 41 min (Excellent)
Charging time (minutes)
Lower is better
Nokia 5 141
Motorola Moto G5 133
Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017) 112
Samsung Galaxy J5 (2016) 153
View all

Conclusion


All things considered, the Nokia 5 is a pretty smartphone that comes with a clean and up-to-date software, but ultimately disappoints in terms of performance. Some people will undoubtedly find it – as well as its €190 ($222) price tag – appealing, but it certainly isn't the best budget phone on the market.

Your alternatives: the Moto G5 can be currently purchased for €175 and provides a similar package while also boasting a Full HD display, although its battery life is a bit inferior. Another handset that comes to mind is the Samsung Galaxy A3 (2017). It's a bit more expensive than the Nokia 5, but it has water and dust protection and superior cameras, while also lasting longer between charges.