Nokia was once considered a shining star in the cell phone industry. But as great as the success was that the Finns celebrated with devices like the iconic Nokia 3310, the descent was unfortunately also hard and steep. It was above all the presentation of the first iPhone in 2007 that dealt the manufacturer the death blow, at least for the cell phone industry. Unfortunately, the company was not able to continue its success in the smartphone market. HMD Global has now secured the rights and dares to make a new start for the Nokia brand. This is not only supposed to be pleasingly cheap, but also commendably sustainable. The Nokia G22 also wants to excel in both disciplines. After all, it not only costs significantly less than 200 Euros. On top of that, it can be easily repaired with the matching repair kit. We check what the ecologically valuable low-budget smartphone is capable of in the Nokia G22 test.
|16.56 cm (6.52 in.)
Pixel density: 269 ppi
Gorilla Glass 3
|Dimensions and weight
|165.0 mm x 76.2 mm x 8.5 mm and 195 g
|Unisoc, Octa-Core (64 bit)
|4.0 GB RAM
|128 GB (expandable via microSD)
|Triple camera: main camera (50 MP) + macro camera (2 MP) + depth sensor (2 MP).
Front camera: 8 MP
|Protection against water and dirt
|LTE (band) details.
Europe:700 (28), 800 (20), 900 (8), 1800 (3), 2100 (1), 2500 (41), 2600 (7, 38)USA:850 (5), 900 (8), 1800 (3), 2100 (1), 2500 (41)Asia:700 (28), 900 (8), 1800 (3), 2100 (1), 2300 (40), 2500 (41)
UMTS 850, 900, 2100
GSM 850, 900, 1800, 1900
|From 174.94 euros (64 GB), from 195.00 euros (128 GB)
Nokia G22 review: scope of delivery
My test device of the Nokia G22 reached me not only in an ecologically valuable cardboard packaging. On top of that, Mathias Schöpflin, Marketing Manager of HMD Global, brought it to me himself at home. After all, he was just in the area and wanted to avoid the emissions of a delivery service. A cool statement! This positive first impression continued with the first look at the top of the packaging. There it says “Built to last, with recycled materials and QuickFix repairability”.
We will find out whether the device lives up to this claim in the course of the test. When you take off the cover, you immediately see the Nokia G22, which also comes with a practical silicone case that already surrounds the smartphone in our test device. Of course, the SIM card tool, a thin user manual and the charging cable (USB-C to USB-C) are also included. As it is now common for other manufacturers, a suitable power adapter is missing. This is not only sustainable, but also saves production costs on the manufacturer’s side.
Nokia G22 review: design and workmanship
The Nokia G22 is not a small smartphone. Thus, it measures 165.0 mm x 76.2 mm x 8.5 mm with a weight of about 195 grams. People with small hands should be aware of this and be prepared for two-handed operation. A look at the front reveals a 6.52-inch display that is interrupted by a teardrop notch in the upper area. Below that is the front-facing camera. The speaker for making calls is located above it.
The screen edges are quite thin on the left, right and top for such an inexpensive smartphone. Unfortunately, the bottom edge is significantly thicker than the rest. This looks a bit unharmonious, but should not be too much of an issue. The SIM card slot is on the left, the volume rocker and the on/off button with an integrated fingerprint sensor are on the right. At the bottom, you can see the USB-C port, the speaker, the microphone, and a 3.5 mm jack.
The latter should please friends of wired headphones very much. Our test device comes in the color Lagoon Blue, which makes a very noble impression. Alternatively, the G22 is also available in a gray shade (Meteor Grey). Regardless of the color, the manufacturer relies on a glossy back. After a few minutes in the hands, it quickly becomes clear why the silicone cover is included in the scope of delivery. After all, the back almost magnetically attracts fingerprints. Nokia’s brand logo is present in the center on the back.
Furthermore, we glimpse a quite harmonious camera module here. This is composed of three lenses and a matching flash. The smartphone scores with a high build quality. If you also consider that the back and the sides of the casing are made of recycled material, you have an even better feeling. The only criticisms here are the rather thick lower screen bezel and the glossy back. Perhaps the successor will prefer a matte design to avoid fingerprints.
Nokia G22 review: display
Of course, you can’t expect an OLED panel from a smartphone in this price range. However, the 6.52-inch IPS panel in Nokia’s G22 certainly cuts a good figure. It offers a quite solid resolution of 1600 x 720 pixels, which generally provides sufficient image sharpness. In terms of refresh rate, a maximum of 90 Hz is possible.
It remains to be seen whether you really want to exhaust this. After all, it eats away at the battery life. Otherwise, the screen can probably best be described with the word “solid”. You get a good brightness (up to 500 lux) and the colors look quite vivid. If you don’t have too many demands on the display, you will be quite satisfied here.
Nokia G22 review: the performance
When we talk about the performance of the Nokia G22, we must of course once again emphasize the low price with which the device is launched. This is undoubtedly a low-budget smartphone that is in the same vein as a Samsung Galaxy A13 (test). The heart of the G22 is an octa-core processor from Unisoc, which is supported by 4 GB of RAM. There is a total of 128 GB as internal memory for photos, videos and apps.
If that’s not enough, you can still expand the memory via microSD card. Of course, you should not expect any miracles in view of the rather weak hardware. However, the configuration should be sufficient for average users. Messenger services, browsing, online shopping and the one or other mobile game are possible without any problems. However, you will have to live with some stutters here and there. But that is really within limits.
The Nokia G22 offers a 5,050 mAh battery. And this offers plenty of endurance. Here, the inexpensive smartphone certainly benefits from the rather sluggish, but energy-efficient processor. According to the manufacturer, the device should be able to last up to three days. The reality looks a bit different during normal use. In the test, I was able to use the G22 for about one and a half days at a stretch. Charging is quite fast thanks to the fast charging function with 20 watts.
Nokia G22 test: Competition for the Fairphone?
A real highlight of the Nokia G22 is the option for extensive repairs. Especially in this price range, this is anything but common. Here, smartphones are often purchased at a low cost, only to be replaced by a new one after one or two years. That is anything but ecological. The Nokia G22 is therefore based on a concept that is somewhat reminiscent of the Fairphone. You should be able to carry out extensive repairs here. Starting with the display to the battery and back, the most susceptible components according to experience can be conveniently replaced with new ones.
For my test I directly received the handy repair tool from IFIXIT. Of course, not everyone has the necessary know-how and skill, so IFIXIT has corresponding instructions on its own website. In addition, you can order the corresponding spare parts on the website. It will not be everyone’s cup of tea to tinker with their own smartphone. However, those who have a penchant for it will enjoy the Nokia G22 for a long time.
Regardless of the hardware, the supply with software or security updates naturally also plays a decisive role in sustainability. Here, the G22 does not seem as sustainable anymore. The manufacturer guarantees software updates for Android for two years. Security updates are available for three years. I would have wished for a somewhat longer support. However, you have to give the device credit for the fact that operating beyond 2026 would probably be utopian in view of the rather weak processor. The Fairphone is definitely ahead in this respect. After all, a new CPU can simply be installed here.
Nokia G22 review: Camera
The G22 has a triple camera. This is made up of the main camera (50 MP), macro camera (2 MP) and depth sensor (2 MP). Similar to the hardware performance, the camera performance is best described as solid. So, you can shoot pretty good photos here if you hold your hand steady enough. Quick snapshots are possible, but you’ll regularly have to reckon with slightly blurred photos here.
You shouldn’t expect any miracles from the software either. It comes along quite clearly, which should be more than sufficient for laymen. You can use different picture modes, such as night mode or portrait mode. You can also switch to the macro lens or take panorama pictures. The selfie camera resolves with 8 MP and also lets you shoot social media compliant photos of yourself.
With the Nokia G22, HMD Global proves that sustainability doesn’t have to be expensive at all. Broken display? Defective battery? Splintered back? Thanks to the repair option with the help of IFIXIT’s customized kit, you can fix these problems on your own and thus get the maximum life out of the smartphone. If you are looking for the fly in the ointment, you will find it in the short supply of Android and security updates of two and three years, respectively. Otherwise, the G22 does not have to hide behind rivals like Samsung’s A13. Considering the low price, you get a good build quality. Computing power and camera performance can best be described as solid. But that is also common in this price range. If you are looking for a cheap smartphone that scores with sustainability, you will find it with the Nokia G22.