Get a front that is all screen is being the goal of mobile manufacturers, but the challenges to overcome are many and along the way have emerged different ideas to circumvent them. The notch is probably the most common, but there are also other options like the hole in the screen or the retractable cameras. The bet of Nubia is perhaps the most risky: remove the front camera and put a screen behind.
The Chinese firm Nubia was at the Mobile World Congress and one of the teams that showed on their stand was the Nubia X, its new high range that has a technical sheet according to the expectations of mobile range. The surprise comes with its design, and is that there is no camera in front, we only have behind. And how do we get a selfie? Easy, making use of the back screen. We tell you all about this curious smartphone.
Technical sheet Nubia X
|SCREENS||Main: LCD 6.26″ FHD + 19:9
Rear: OLED 5.1″ 19:9 (720 x 1520)
|DIMENSIONS||154.1 x 73.3 x 8.4 mm, 181 g.|
|CAMERA||Rear: Dual 16 + 24 MP (f1.7 + f1.8)|
|OS||Android Oreo 8.1 with Nubia UI 6.0|
|OTHERS||Fingerprint reader on the side, Quick Charge Quick Charge 3.0|
|PRICE||From 3299 yuan|
Design all screen (s)
Locating the front camera is the biggest challenge of the manufacturers in their search of the mobile that is all screen and here Nubia has bet strong. The front of Nubia X is all screen, well, almost everything. We still have frames around the panel and they are still somewhat wider up and down, but they are only a few millimeters.
There are still frames up and down the screen, but they are just a few millimeters. The Nubia X achieves the most sought-after screen effect.
Little more we can count on the front because there is no other element, although we are talking about its main screen. Nubia is committed to a 6.26-inch LCD panel with a 19:9 format that gave us a good impression during the contact. Well of brightness, of contrast and tones, although without the ‘wow’ effect of an OLED, everything is said.
If we go to the back, we have the double camera and a glass surface in blue tone that initially does not present anything strange, but this changes when we turn on the rear panel, which by the way is OLED type and allows us to activate the Always On mode as it usually happens on the main screen.
The screen does not occupy the entire back, but it is located just below the cameras and leaves quite wide frames around. The visualization is correct, but the fact of being ‘hidden’ behind that blue crystal affects the colors, which are excessively saturated. In any case, it is not meant to be used all the time but occasionally when taking a selfie, so it is not a problem. Also comment that the touch works perfectly and the handling is the same as that of the main screen.
With a front screen that reaches the edge and a rear screen also, there is no space for the fingerprint reader. Nubia does not integrate it under the front panel (nor could it be an LCD), but instead betting on the sides. The curious thing here is that it has two fingerprint sensors, one on each side, which makes it very comfortable to unlock in any position.
As for the feeling in hand, the Nubia X has a quite comfortable size thanks to the compaction of the front and is very comfortable thanks to its rounded edges. It is not especially light but it is not heavy either.
Using the double screen to make selfies
The objective of this duplicity of screens is none other than to allow us to take selfies with the rear camera without problem. We turn it around, the back screen activates and we can see how we are going to fit in the frame. This is the theory and in practice we have to say that the system works, although in some cases it gets stuck and does not open the screen as fast as we expect or directly does not open it, but they are few.
The quality of the sensor is above what we get with most cameras for selfies.
The truth is that having the screen behind lets us do selfies as if it were a front camera, with the difference that here we have a pair of sensors of higher quality. We could not extract the samples from the camera to show them, but the quality of the sensor is above what we get with most selfies cameras. Of course, as a rear camera did not surprise us too much. We will have to wait for the in-depth analysis to reach conclusions.
High-end features with ‘Made in China’ software
As we said at the beginning, the Nubia X has a technical profile typical of the high range in which it is registered. We have a Snapdragon 845 processor, 6 or 8 GB of RAM and up to 256 GB of storage, although the version that was exposed was 64 GB. At the touchdown did not give time to thoroughly test the performance but the fluidity was constant and we had no problem of lag or pulls.
On the performance of fingerprint readers, comment that both the configuration process and the unlocking is fast and fluid. To put a stick, since we have two sensors would have been interesting to use them simultaneously, i.e. to unlock the two traces were necessary, but it is not, with one is unlocked.
With respect to software, Nubia includes Nubia UI layer that is characterized by having a strong personalization that follows the usual line in Chinese terminals: no app drawer, with a very striking color and many pre-installed apps. In addition, in the case of Nubia there are quite remarkable changes in the structure of Android as the panel of quick adjustments, which becomes independent of the curtain of notifications and passes to the bottom, as if it were the Control Center of iOS.
The software comes from the hand of Nubia UI, a very personalized layer that moves away from the Android structure and experience.
Finally, mention that the battery, although we could not put it to test in such a short time, with 3800 mAh maybe we go something just because we do not forget that we have two screens and, although they do not turn on simultaneously, are more elements that consume Energy.
A risky bet that works better than expected
The idea of taking a screen to the back is not new, we saw a similar bet with the Meizu Pro 7, but now Nubia uses the concept to solve the big design dilemma that does not know where or how to place the front camera. Undoubtedly it is a daring bet and, after spending time with Nubia X, we can say that the result is quite good.
Remove the front camera and put a screen behind is a daring bet and, after spending time with the Nubia X, we can say that the result is quite good.
One of the most striking things is that the design of the back has not been compromised; when the screen is off, it disappears literally. On the front, the panel has been brought to the edge and the result is the sought-after ‘all-screen’ effect so sought after in these times.
This ingenious solution works quite well at software level and in the short time that the test lasted we got used to turning it around to take selfies. However, there are doubts about how it will affect autonomy and the software is too focused on the Chinese market, the only country in which it is currently for sale. We hope to see it for more countries and above all to be able to test it more thoroughly.