HMD Global, the company that owns the license to manufacture nokia phones, is introducing a selection of new phones. And along with those phones, there’s also a new way to buy one of them to encourage you to keep it longer than usual. That’s right, HMD Global doesn’t want you to keep upgrading your phone, an unusual move for any phone maker.
The new way to buy and maintain your phone is called Circular, and it will “redefine phone ownership,” according to HMD Global. So what is it about? On the surface, it’s a simple phone lease service, where you sign up with the company and pay monthly for your new Nokia phone. It is a fixed contract for only three months, so you are free to cancel, continue or upgrade whenever you want. But don’t do that, because Circular is all about keeping your phone.
What makes it different from the rest is that HMD Global will reward you for keeping your phone, but not through free gifts or a break in your monthly payments. Instead, you get virtual credits called Seed of Tomorrow (yes, really) to invest in a set of curated, environmentally conscious causes. The longer you keep your phone, the more seeds you get and the more causes you can support. Unconnected, Ecologi and Clear Rivers are the names that are already on board.
Depending on which one you choose to support, your seeds will do different things. Spent with Ecologi will help fund the planting of new trees, while Unconnected will help bring network connectivity to those most in need. Spent seeds with ClearRivers will help clean rivers of plastic debris. However, at this stage, it is unclear how many “seeds” you earn and how long it will take to get them. All we know is that one seed is worth 17 trees planted in an Ecologi-curated forest.
The phone will remain the property of HMD Global, but with this comes peace of mind as it will be replaced if lost, damaged or stolen. It also promises to help with product questions and also provide troubleshooting tips. When you finally return the phone, it will either live on as a refurbished device, be recycled or donated to charity.
The program will launch first in the UK and Germany, and plans will cost between £10 and £25 per month (around $12 to $30, depending on the phone you choose). There are four options right now, including the new Nokia X30 5G and G60 5G, plus the existing Nokia XR20 and Nokia T10 tablet. The Nokia T20 tablet will be added in the future, and while Circular will be available through Nokia’s online store at first, there will be partner options in the future. In addition, there are also plans to introduce Circular in other countries.
The Circular plan is part of what makes Nokia’s latest phone series the “most sustainable yet”, according to HMD Global, with its devices and packaging made from more recycled material, plus long warranty periods and monthly product updates. security and software as well. Add the new Circular plan, and there are plenty of reasons to keep your phone longer than you normally would.
The Nokia X30 5G is Circular’s poster smartphone. The phone has a 100% aluminum chassis and a polycarbonate back cover made from 65% recycled material, plus it’s durable with an IP67 water-resistance rating and Gorilla Glass Victus over the screen. On the software side, you get three years of major OS updates and security updates, plus the X30 5G comes with a full three-year warranty. Everything comes in packaging that has been reduced in size, which is made from 75% recycled paper.
The phone has a 6.43-inch AMOLED screen with a resolution of 2400 x 1080 pixels, a 4,200 mAh battery and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 695 processor with 6 GB or 8 GB of RAM, and 128 GB or 256 GB of storage space. On the back is a 50-megapixel main camera with 4-in-1 pixel binning and optical image stabilization (OIS), plus a 13MP wide-angle camera with new special night modes to improve low-light images. On the front is a 16MP selfie camera. The X30 5G will cost 529 euros (or around $530) when it launches.
Less expensive than the X30 5G and not as environmentally friendly, the G60 5G has a 60% recycled plastic body. However, it uses the same Qualcomm Snapdragon 695 processor with a choice of 4GB or 6GB of RAM, and 64GB or 128GB of storage space. The screen measures 6.58 inches, and there’s a 50MP main camera plus an 8MP wide-angle camera on the back. The battery has a capacity of 4,500mAh, there is a 3.5mm headphone jack on the body, 20W charging, and a fingerprint sensor on the side of the phone. It will cost 319 euros (about $320) when it launches.
Not a phone, but a tablet. The Nokia T21 has a 10.3-inch screen with a resolution of 2000 x 1200 pixels, and is powered by a Unisoc T612 processor and 4GB of RAM. There are two storage options, 64GB or 128GB, and there’s room for a microSD card of up to 512GB. The battery packs a massive 8,200mAh, there are stereo speakers and a 3.5mm headphone jack on the body, and a single 8MP camera on the back. Another 8MP camera is on the front for video calls. The Nokia T21 will cost 239 euros (or $240) when it launches.