UNBOXED: Reviewing the Nuu G3 Smartphone
In an era where the major smartphone manufacturers are pushing new product into the market that is nearing (and exceeding) that $1,000 threshold, it’s refreshing to see other companies take a stand and break the mold with low cost mobile devices. We had the opportunity to look at one of those “entry-level” smartphones—the Nuu G3—ahead of the device’s launch at the end of March. Out of the box, there’s a lot to be impressed with with the G3, but, as you’d expect with a phone that comes in at a fraction of the cost of other flagship devices on the market, there’s going to be some give and take with the G3.
But the best place to start is with the price. At $199, you simply cannot beat the value that Nuu provides with the G3. At the same price point you could own a fifth of an iPhone X, the same with the Galaxy S9, or other dumber smartphones that lack some of the major features we’ve come to expect in today’s pocket-sized computers. The G3 ships with Android Nougat 7.1, and comes in a casing that looks and feels premium. The phone has some weight to it, which leads the user to believe Nuu packed some premium materials into the phone. It feels nice in the hand—albeit a little slippery with the all glass design.
One gripe about the design, related to the all-glass nature of the phone is that, with all-glass, you’d expect there to be wireless charging functionality. That’s not the case, but it’s certainly not the end of the world.
Other internal features of the phone—you’ve got 64GB of storage that’s expandable up to 128GB, 4GB of RAM, dual sim capabilities, a dual camera, facial recognition for unlocking the phone, fast charge through USB-C, and NFC. And all of this is baked around a Helio P25 Octa Core processor. It’s by no means a Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor, but you still have a snappy user experience.
The 5.7-inch HD+ display is impressive in size, but a little underwhelming from a resolution standpoint. With that much screen space and an 18:9 aspect ratio, you’d hope for a full 1080p HD display, but this being a budget kind of phone, Nuu allowed for a 1440x720 display resolution. I get that corners have to be cut to get the price down to what it is, but when you’re talking about the one thing that you stare at every second while using this device, it’s a little hard to get over the display shortcomings.
The camera left a little to be desired as well, though the camera settings were fun to play with. As an iPhone user, I appreciated the ability to mess with things like ISO, white balance, exposure levels, and more. The dual camera system on the back of the phone (13MP and 5MP) was just OK.
A lot can be done to photos after the fact with filters and all, but there’s something to be said for a phone like the iPhone X that just takes good photos with lots of color and great balance throughout. It might not be fair to look at side-by-sides of the two phones (shown above with iPhone X images on the left), but it helps paint a complete picture about how the G3’s camera system stacks up. I found more success with the front-facing 13MP selfie camera, though it was a slow reaction from hitting the shutter button to when the image would be captured.
All in all, the Nuu G3 is a phone that really should leave consumers more than happy given the lack of dollars they’d be dropping on the smartphone. The saying, ‘You get what you pay for,’ typically carries a negative connotation with it, but I don’t think that’s the case with the G3. You’re getting what you pay for with this phone, but you’re really not paying much—and Nuu provides a tremendous amount of value compared to other options out there on the market. This is a really solid low-cost smartphone option for consumers.