Nokia 7.2 - flawed but fixable
4.0Overall Score
Name: Nokia 7.2 (late 2019)
Price (RRP): $549
Manufacturer: HMD GlobaL Nokia

The Nokia 7.2 is part of it’s late 2019 ‘.2’ refresh and frankly its more heart replacement surgery than a refresh. Its internal name was ‘Daredevil’ presumably after Marvel’s blind vigilante.

On paper, the new Nokia 7.2 looks impressive with a 48MP triple camera and 20MP selfie with Zeiss optics, 6.3-inch FHD/HDR10/IPS screen, Qualcomm SD660 SoC and 4/128GB all for $549.

But during our tests, the Nokia 7.2 was not the stellar performer suffering severe CPU throttling (affects gamers and videographers), inconsistent ‘actions’ (it does something one way and differently after a reboot or cool down), low battery life (under load) and long recharge times (with its standard 5V/2A charger).

Last years 7.1 model scored 4.9-out-of-5, and I was expecting even better. I am not saying it is bad, but it is not the class leader that it could and should be. If I had to surmise, Nokia knocked itself out on the camera and put what little money it had left into a pretty coloured case and internals.

Nokia 7.2, 4/128GB, Dual Sim, dedicated micro-SD, Model TA-1196

Australian website here

Price: $549 from JB Hi-Fi and The Good Guys

This means it notches up to mid-market whereas the previous 7.1 was $499 and the king of the mass-market.

  1. Mid-market $500-799 (about 25% of the market)
  2. Mass-market $200-499 (about 25% of the market)

So it is competing with the best phones under $500, and many of these have 48MP cameras and larger, faster-charging batteries. Then it competes wth the sub-$600 phones like the impressive OPPO Reno2 Z with 6.5” AMOLED, 8/128GB/micro-SD, VOOC 3.0, and 48MP quad-camera.

Apologies to Nokia – it’s a good phone, but it would be even better at $499.

In the box

  • Nokia 7.2 in Charcoal, Cyan Green, Ice (Cyan Green is the best)
  • Charger 5V/2A 10W
  • USB-A to USB-C cable
  • 3.5 mm standard earbuds and mic

Missing (compared to the competition)

  • Clear bumper case
  • Fast charger (we found it does not support PD fast charge)
  • Pre-fitted screen protector
  • Recycle post-paid bag

The first impression

I am tired of grey – space grey, charcoal or any other grey or black (Nokia – get the hint and send me pretty shiny things). Sure it is a nice matte finish, but the Cyan Green or even Ice adds a little more pizzaz to compete with some beautiful and wildly coloured phones in this segment.

The camera ‘circle’ above the fingerprint reader protrudes 2mm and has glass to protect the lenses. The only excitement is that the power button is also a notification LED.

In other words, it is yet another nondescript glass slab missing the copper and stainless highlights of the 7.1.

Screen

  • 6.3-inch, 2340 x 1080, 400ppi, IPS, 81.33% STBR, 19:9, Gorilla Glass 3
  • Claimed: 96% NTSC, HDR10 capable, 500 nits and 1500:1 contrast ratio
  • 10-bit – up to 1 billion colours

The screen has a Pixelworks co-processor to drive the always-on, 10-bit HDR display and upscale standard dynamic range to HDR. Called PureDisplay this offers dynamic mode – original, photo, video, reading and game modes that alter colour balance and temperature.

Nokia 7.2 screen

Tests: