Nokia XR20 5G review: New legendary Nokia that “breaks” many grounds

We have used Nokia XR20 5G 6GB RAM (Blue) Indian variant as our daily driver for over one month and this is our detailed review of the smartphone. It may help you in deciding whether you should really go for the Nokia XR20 5G as your next if you really wanted to own one and are still undecided.

Nokia XR20 5G sits above all the latest Nokia smartphones in the lineup. While not a typical flagship with the most powerful processor plonked inside, the Nokia XR20 5G ticks all the right boxes as a top-of-the-line smartphone and combines it with a military-grade robust body.

Nokia XR20 5G detailed video review:

We have reviewed the Nokia XR20 5G in detail in the hands-on review video. Read on for the written review below.

Nokia XR20 5G Design:

Nokia XR20 5G feels like a monster of a smartphone in your hand. It doesn’t feel even for a second if something can harm the smartphone. Rather, when you hold it in your hand it feels like a good weapon to hit and break some target. On a serious note “Nokia is truly a Brick again”.

The Nokia XR20 front gives the appearance of a modern smartphone with centered punch-hole selfie camera. The Nano-textured back design gives it a more steady feel while holding. The design here is the key differentiator that not only separates Nokia XR20 5G from other Rugged smartphones but also gives an edge over normal smartphones.

Though it is a big smartphone with 6.67-inch display, because of its 20:9 display ratio, it still fits just fine in your hand. Display looks good with deep black color levels and good contrast.

Nokia XR20 5G Durability & Toughness tests:

We subjected the Nokia XR20 5G to several durability and toughness tests. It ace Bend tests and Soap-water soak test with utter ease. In fact, we second the claim made by Nokia Mobile that you can clean Nokia XR20 5G with soap and water if you decide to do so.

In this video we checked the toughness of Nokia XR20 by cracking Walnuts and by dropping it face-down on concrete floor. How does Nokia XR20 5G perform in these latest tests? It cracks the Walnuts with utter ease and doesn’t show any sign of impact even on the camera module. We did face-down drop test from heights of more than 6 ft and there is no visible impact on display. So, it seems to aces all the toughness tests thanks to its military-grade design.

Nokia XR20 5G 5G Display & Audio output Quality review:

Nokia XR20 5G comes with a 6.67-inch FHD+ display. It boasts of a Sunlight brightness boost to maximum 550 nits. Here are our observations after playing with Nokia XR20 5G as a daily driver.

  • The display is super-bright and ideal brightness level is around 40-45% in most of the cases.
  • Adaptive brightness learns your choices quickly.
  • Outdoor readability is excellent on Nokia XR20 5G.
  • Viewing angles are excellent.
  • Blacks are deep and color reproduction very good

You can control white Balance on Nokia XR20 5G to add saturation to display. Fingerprint resistance is a very nice feature of Nokia XR20 5G display and you don’t need to wipe it time and again. The display is excellent for media consumption and gaming with the real-estate it offers.

The Nokia XR20 5G audio output quality is one of the best you will get on any smartphone. It is very loud and rich all thanks to the Nokia OZO Playback and extra loud Dual speakers. It remains rich, even at the loudest the speakers has to offer. It offers an excellent video watching and gaming experience because of the excellent audio output.

Check our Nokia XR20 5G detailed video review above to judge the Display and Audio output quality yourself.

Nokia XR20 5G cameras review:

Nokia XR20 5G rear camera is an excellent performer. Be it stills or video recording, it provides quality output with lots of resolved details. The Nokia XR20 5G captures images with vibrant colors and still keeping the color reproduction close to the subject.

The Nokia XR20 5G camera is really good at capturing pleasing Bokeh, Portrait and closeup macro images. The ultra-wide 13MP camera is the best you will get on a Nokia smartphone. It is a great addition for capturing landscapes and provides really good results.

Nokia XR20 5G front camera is a surprise performer in low-light too. As you can see in the sample images above the Night portrait mode provides excellent results. It keeps skin tone natural and captures pleasing selfies with vibrant colors in daylight.

In low-light too, Nokia XR20 5G rear camera captures well-illuminated images. Night mode on Nokia XR20 5G works much faster and gathers much more light. Again, the camera on Nokia XR20 5G has one of the best low-light imaging performance of any Nokia smartphone camera. You can read our detailed Nokia XR20 cameras review by clicking on the link provided below.

Nokia XR20 5G cameras review (in-depth). Full-size samples & videos

Nokia XR20 5G Performance review :

Nokia XR20 5G is powered by the Snapdragon 480 5G processor and packs near-stock Android. The performance of the Snapdragon 480 5G is well-known and doesn’t disappoint on Nokia XR20 5G too.

Nokia XR20 5G is good at handling basic and advanced smartphones tasks. Be it browsing, gaming or multitasking with many apps and games open in the background, it remains at ease. Games and apps also resume well from background with device under stress.

Though, it could have been better for Nokia XR20 5G to come with a better processor when it has been launched like a portfolio leading device.

Check our Nokia XR20 5G detailed video review above to judge the performance yourself.

Nokia XR20 5G enhanced touch sensitivity, Gestures, Face Unlock, Display settings:

Nokia XR20 5G features enhanced touch sensitivity and programmable emergency key as exclusive features. The enhanced touch sensitivity is very useful when one uses the Tablet wearing a glove or when a screen protector in used over the display.

The Red emergency key on top of the Nokia XR20 5G can be reprogrammed to do different actions in “Press” and “Long Press” scenarios. I have personally set the press action to take screenshots.

Nokia XR20 5G also comes with Face unlock, some cool gestures and the ability to alter display color saturation. Face unlock works fine out of the box and unlock is really quick. It has three settings to control when to use Face unlock.

The Nokia XR20 5G comes with many gestures including turn over to reject call, mute on pick-up, double-tap to wake up phone. Swipe fingerprint for notifications and jump to camera also are very useful gestures too.

Nokia XR20 5G Battery Life, Fast charging & Call quality:

Nokia XR20 5G supports 18W wired fast charging and 15W wireless charging. It is Qi wireless charging compatible and features Quick Charge 4.0.

Nokia XR20 5G has shown excellent battery life during our review. In real-life conditions, I have been getting around 40-44 hrs of battery life with heavy “blogger” usage of the device. This involves lots of browsing, streaming, gaming, apps testing, attending calls and daily chores.

It may be around 44-48 hrs for a moderately heavy usage scenario and that is really very very impressive. Screen-on time typically varies between 9 hrs – 11 hrs for different usage scenarios.

Nokia XR20 5G offers stellar call quality and call reception is usually very good. I didn’t face any issue like call drops etc and it holds well even during long conversations.

Nokia XR20 5G Positives & Negatives:

Negatives

  • A premium smartphone like Nokia XR20 5G deserves a better processor though it does well in handling daily smartphone tasks with SD 480 5G processor.
  • Pricing should have been more competitive in price-sensitive markets like India.

Positives

  • Nokia XR20 5G looks premium and super tough at the same time. It can easily outlast its competition and offer much more as a smartphone companion for years. Its durability is legendary.
  • The Full HD display is super bright and ideal for outdoor usage.
  • Imaging quality wise Nokia XR20 5G rear camera really impresses. Rear Camera exceeds expectations and offers good performance in all lighting conditions. It also supports OZO Audio capture
  • Audio output quality with OZO Playback and extra loud dual-speakers is top notch
  • Battery life is one of the best you will get from an Android smartphone. Can easily go through two days on a single charge.

Nokia XR20 5G Conclusion:

We subjected Nokia XR20 5G to our trademark rigorous and detailed evaluation. After using it as our daily driver for over one month, we recommend it as a premium smartphone that can accompany and serve you well for years. Nokia XR20 5G seriously takes the “indestructible Nokia legend” forward.

Nokia XR20 5G comes with an attractive and super robust design, quality display, excellent cameras, rich and loud audio output and great battery life. While the military-grade protection that it offers is the “highlight”, it is a very capable smartphone otherwise too.

Coming to special features of the Nokia XR20 5G the enhanced display sensitivity, programmable emergency key and Wireless charging certainly need mention. The Nokia XR20 5G camera also features the new SpeedWarp mode along with OZO Audio capture. OZO Playback makes the audio experience ideal for gaming and video watching.

Nokia XR20 5G comes running Android 11 out of the box. It has guaranteed three years of OS updates and four years of security updates support. With its matchless durability it is certainly going to be with your for longer than any other smartphone in its class.

Nokia XR20 5G officially starts at Rs 46,999 for the 6GB RAM/128GB storage variant in India. It is priced at USD 549 in the US for the 6GB RAM/128GB storage variant, at £399 in the UK for the 6GB RAM/128GB storage variant.

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