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News, leaks, rumored price, and release window


The Nothing Phone 1 stood out with its premium, unique design and clean Android experience. But the phone was riddled with bugs, and the Carl Pei-led firm took its time to address them. With 2023’s Nothing Phone 2, the company targeted a premium price point and made improvements to deliver a better experience. But the higher price meant the Phone 2 did not deliver the same value as some of our favorite budget Android phones.

Nothing is getting ready to launch the Phone 2a in 2024, a cheaper version of the Phone 2. With a full confirmation of its existence in place, here’s everything we know about the phone based on the leaks and rumors.

Nothing Phone 2a: Design and specs

Turn off the bright lights

Source: Smartprix

Nothing’s first two phones made a mark with their design, with the Glyph lights at the back helping the phones to stand out from the competition. Some might find the design too flashy, especially high-profile executives and professionals. Nothing apparently plans to continue with the same design language with the Phone 2a.

While real-life photos of the Phone 2a have leaked, they are of a PVT unit and don’t reveal its final design. It indicates the cameras might switch to a vertical layout and sit in the center, unlike the Phone 2, whose dual cameras are placed horizontally in the upper-left corner.

The Phone 2a will reportedly feature a redesigned back, and it looks like the Glyph lights — the single thing that really helps place Nothing devices apart from the pack — aren’t going to make it through to this new variant. If you found the Phone 2’s design too blinged out, you might like the Phone 2a with fewer LED lights on its back. But for most people, it’s likely to be a disappointing change considering devices like the OnePlus 12R will almost assuredly outperform Nothing’s budget phone.

Meanwhile, the Phone 2a could use a Visionix and BOE-supplied 6.7-inch 120Hz OLED panel. There’s no word on its peak brightness and other specs, but it should offer respectable performance in all key areas.

Since the Phone 2a will be a cheaper alternative to the Phone 2, it is unlikely to pack the same powerful Snapdragon chip as the latter. Rumors suggest Nothing’s upcoming mid-range phone could use the MediaTek Dimensity 7200 SoC, featuring 2x Cortex-A715 CPUs and 6x Cortex-A510 GPUs, with an Arm Mali-G610 MC4 GPU. This will be paired with 8GB RAM and 128GB storage. It is currently unclear if Carl Pei’s company will launch additional RAM and storage variants of the phone.

Another recent SmartPrix leak points to the Nothing Phone 2a housing dual-50MP rear cameras. Nothing will supposedly use a 1/1.5-inch 50MP Samsung S5KGM9 shooter for the primary camera, while a 50MP 1/2.76-inch 0.6μm Samsung S5KJN1 sensor will do the ultrawide duty. Nothing might use the 32MP SonyIMX615 sensor for selfies.

We found the Nothing Phone 2’s camera performance less than impressive. While it has improved with updates since launch, there’s room for improvement. Don’t get your hopes up about the Phone 2a’s 50MP snappers blowing you away with their imaging performance.

The battery capacity of the Phone 2a has not leaked. However, with a big 6.7-inch display, it’s safe to assume the device will feature a 4,500mAh to 4,800mAh cell. Coupled with the Dimensity chip fabricated on TSMC’s 4nm node, the Phone 2a should deliver all-day battery life.

Nothing Phone 2a: Software

As clean as ever

Threads app running on Nothing Phone 2a

Besides the unique design of the Phone 1 and 2, Nothing created a name for itself with Nothing OS’ clean experience. The first iteration of the skin was buggy. The company has made huge strides with Nothing OS 2 to deliver a stable experience. If you loved Nothing OS on the Phone 1 or 2, the Phone 2a will likely run on the same skin.

The device will apparently launch with Android 14-based Nothing OS 2.5 and deliver almost the same experience as its more expensive sibling. Some Glyph-related customization options and features might be missing due to the scaled-down Glyph lights, but that’s about it.

For the Phone 2, Nothing promises three years of OS updates and bi-monthly security patches. While not the best, it would be impressive if the company promised the same software support for its budget phone.

Nothing Phone 2a: Price and release date

Coming sooner than you might think

The Nothing Phone 2 was a step up in terms of specs and price from the Phone 1. With the Phone 2a, Nothing aims to target a lower price point, which should help the company reach more customers, especially in price-conscious markets. Rumors indicate the Nothing Phone 2a could cost around $400, making it more affordable than the Phone 2. Considering the rumored specs, this would also be a reasonable price for the phone.

A screenshot of the Nothing Phone 2a's teaser email

All leaks suggest the Nothing Phone 2a could debut at MWC 2024, which will be held from February 26 to February 29, 2024. This is certainly plausible with Nothing announcing an event at one of the year’s biggest trade shows. Unfortunately, Nothing’s official announcement doesn’t indicate whether or not we’ll learn more at MWC, but it certainly seems like a plausible launch pad.

The Nothing Phone 1 was available in limited markets, with the company expanding to the US with the Phone 2. Nothing is reportedly developing four variants of the Phone 2a, with the company seemingly planning to release the phone in more markets.

Nothing Phone 2a will face stiff competition

The Pixel 7a resting on a gray table in the sun with the homescreen shown.

If the rumored $400 price tag of the Nothing Phone 2a is correct, it will face stiff competition from Samsung and Google. The Samsung Galaxy A54 and the Google Pixel 7a pack excellent displays and deliver excellent imaging performance. While both retail for $500, they are frequently discounted to around $400 or less. That’s to say nothing of the OnePlus 12R, which is headed to North America and Europe in a first for the R-series of devices.

The Nothing Phone 2 might not be able to capture the same stunning photos as its two primary competitors. However, the rumored MediaTek SoC should allow it to deliver better performance. The Phone 2a could also become a great alternative if you don’t like the bloated One UI experience and the Pixel 7a isn’t available in your region, or you aren’t a fan of its average battery life.


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