Nokia's partnership with HMD Global has already brought a handful of interesting Android-powered, Nokia-branded smartphones to market, and by the looks of things, HMD has no plans to stop anytime soon.
On the contrary, in fact, HMD is determined to revive everything good about the Nokia brand we came to love in years past, including, it seems, the camera hardware.
Now HMD has signed an agreement with another old Nokia partner, German optics firm Carl Zeiss. Since signing the deal, an announcement Tweet also dropped a little visual hint that a dual-camera setup might be coming from the deal; and as HMD/Nokia now produces just Android phones, we know what that will mean for the end product!
Competition will be incredibly stiff during the latter part of 2017, however, with the release of Apple's iPhone 8 and Samsung’s Galaxy Note 8; both handsets will reportedly feature vastly overhauled imaging units.
The result? A huge selection of impressive camera phones during the latter part of the year. This is great for the market and consumers alike, as specs are no longer the sole reason to by a phone, innovation is back in full swing and this is where things start to get very interesting.
How Nokia prices its Nokia 9 handset is also a point worth considering; the phone will likely be cheaper than both Apple’s iPhone 8 and Samsung’s Galaxy Note 8 – potentially by a few hundred dollars, if HMD's current pricing model is anything to go by.
HMD said it was planning "to set new imaging standards within the smartphone industry."
As it happens, earlier rumours surrounding the Nokia 9 suggested it could come with Carl Zeiss optics, and that it would arrive inside 2017. Presumably this tip was the product of early talks between HMD and Carl Zeiss ahead of the final agreement that was just announced.
HMD Global's CEO, Arto Nummela, in a report from NPU, said;
"Collaborating with ZEISS is an important part of our commitment to always deliver the very best experience for our customers. Our fans want more than a great smartphone camera, they want a complete imaging experience that doesn’t just set the standard but redefines it. Our fans expect it and, together with ZEISS, we’re delivering it – co-developed imaging excellence for all."
Back when Nokia made Windows Phone handsets, we saw impressive Carl Zeiss camera setups on the Nokia Lumia 1020, and the Nokia Belle OS-based Nokia 808 PureView; these devices featured 41MP camera sensors!
Several more of the firm's Windows Phone handsets also featured Zeiss optics, though the megapixel ratings weren't as high. Still, all round the results were impressive; Nokia was regarded as one of the best in the business for smartphone cameras...it was just that it was hard to recommend the Windows Phone platform.
With the firm making the switch to Android, we're quite excited at the prospect of PureView level, dual-camera imaging from a new Nokia handset powered by Google's software.
We'll be sure to keep you updated as we hear more!