Nowadays, it is difficult to imagine a smartphone that is radically different from others. Sure, we had folding phones, which again aroused the interest of many technology enthusiasts, who got tired of the modern design of smartphones, but how about regular phones exciting again?
From what I can say, this seems to be the goal of Carl Pei’s Nothing, a company full of busy investors, hype men and top designers. (opens in a new tab)they are all working to see a “radical reinterpretation of mobile technologies”.
But while Pei worked to build a whole new company with a new vision for the future of smartphones (opens in a new tab), many strategies behind building a brand feel like they come from the same handbook from its OnePlus days. This is definitely not a bad thing – OnePlus has risen from nothing to something meteorically fast – but I also feel uncertain about the actual announcement of the Nothing phone (1) (opens in a new tab) in a few weeks.
what is waiting for us?
Last week Wallpaper (opens in a new tab) they published an interview with Carl Pei of Nothing, which contained a rather juicy headline. Although I went into it with high hopes – and I suppose so did many other technology enthusiasts – the details were rather superficial. I came up with the idea that Nothing was driving the dream of transparent electronics from the 90’s everywhere, but nothing else.
As it has been for several months, Nothing is teasing everything from the Nothing OS launcher (opens in a new tab) to a transparent design that will be present in all the company’s products – a style that began last year’s excellent Nothing Ear (1) (opens in a new tab) earplugs. But transparent electronics is definitely not enough to claim that a company’s products are a “radical reinterpretation” of anything, much less exciting, to build a brand out of nothing.
In fact, we’ve seen this kind of design hype in the past from one of Pei’s companies: OnePlus. When OnePlus 5 was teased, we saw sites like The Verge (opens in a new tab) pump up hype for phone. The article talked about how OnePlus was finally focused on producing an excellent camera, complete with photos of several design prototypes that could be the ultimate phone.
Many of them look similar to the final product that was delivered, but a few show designs that are much more unique. The month before, in May, we had even seen several leaks that brought sketches of a potential OnePlus 5, all of which looked very similar to the popular HTC phone that most enthusiasts adored.
All of this created a lot of hype for the phone, which eventually looked almost identical to the iPhone 7 from all angles – even including the giant frames on the front – and many design wishes remained. It was boring, mundane, and continued the no-delivery hype trend that OnePlus had suffered from for some time.
So will history eventually repeat itself with the Nothing Phone (1) and its design language? The last large company to try to create a transparent phone left this idea after only two generations – it was the Xiaomi Mi 9 (opens in a new tab) and Mi 10 (opens in a new tab)To be specific – and I feel like I know why: users usually slap their phones holster.
Don’t get me wrong. I am a 90s child. I loved the pure electronics craze and I would definitely decide to buy such a device if it came to market. Damn, I’m one of those bastards who buys “transparent” Dbrand skins for phones just to look different.
But if everyone is just going to cover their phones with a case, what’s the point of having a great looking phone? At the very least, it will certainly not be a distinguishing factor for consumers who want to pick up equipment from a completely unknown brand.
In addition, at the end of the interview, a small piece of fascinating information remained, which was discarded almost as quickly as the material referred to. It turned out that the phone frame (1) will be made of recycled aluminum, but we know nothing more. It seems to me like a big design exhibition that should be highlighted, but nothing seemed to bring much detail. Curious.
Above is a map of the Nothing subway system provided by Wallpaper for the aforementioned Nothing Phone design interview (1). Nothing’s chief design officer, Tom Howard, told Wallpaper that he liked this type of map because of its ability to organize “a very, very complex system and (invent) how to illustrate it beautifully.”
While discussing these design concepts with my colleagues on the latest Android Central podcast, we talked about the Nothing option, including a dedicated case for each Nothing phone (1) in the box. Such a case could use the above-mentioned metro map design in conjunction with the (presumed) transparent design of the phone itself to create a completely unique – and most importantly, enviable – looking look.
Nor does it seem to try to offer consumers a complete ecosystem instead of a single product, but not everyone is convinced that it can fulfill this vision.
Will there be anything on Nothing’s phone?
I imagine Nothing has a lot of tricks up the sleeve for the phone itself when it’s officially announced in the near future, but so far what we’ve actually been able to get – that’s the Nothing launcher – hasn’t been overwhelming. However, this could be fine, especially if the final product fulfills promises to be revolutionary.
#hard #truth #Phone #hype