The budget smartphone space is a hotly contested market and in a market like Kenya, this is the most popular category. Most people are only able to afford phones that are up to KES 10,000 and in some cases, up to KES 15,000, and this forces companies to come up with phones that can satisfy that market.

HMD announced the Nokia 2 way back in October but it was officially released to the Kenyan market early this month. I was particularly excited about this release since it is the most affordable Android phone with the Nokia badge in the market, as is priced quite favorably at KES 11,000.

The phone found its way into the office and I have some quick impressions about it.

The phone comes in a tiny box, which is a weird thing to say for a phone with a 5-inch screen. The box opens like a drawer which reveals the phone first, then the usual accessories (earphones, charging brick and micro-USB cable) and a quick start guide.

The specs: The Nokia 2 sports a 5 inch 720p LTPS screen with Gorilla Glass 3, a massive 4100 mAH battery, an aluminium frame, 5MP selfie camera and a 8MP rear camera, 8GB internal storage + MicroSD card slot, 1GB RAM, LTE support and VoLTE ready and has the base Snapdragon 212 processor.

Nokia 2

The phone feels quite solid and heavy when you pick it up, which is thanks to the aluminum frame and huge battery. On powering up the screen, I was surprised by how good the 720p display was. The LTPS screen used here is the best I’ve used in this price category and a huge plus to this phone. The back is made of matte plastic in the following color options: Pewter / Black, Pewter / White, Copper / Black. The back is removable (the battery is not removable) where you get to slot in your nano-SIM cards and MicroSD card.

Since this is a Nokia, it uses pretty much stock Android 7.1.1 Nougat and I love it! Other than the Android One phones that we’ve seen, most phones in this category feature skinned version of Android at this price range, so this is a refreshing thing to see.

First impressions so far are super. Expect the full review later on where we get to check other aspects, like its battery life, everyday performance, VoLTE support with Faiba’s network, sample camera photos and much more.