Our Verdict

The Nokia 5 is the best-looking smartphone at its price point, but in use it’s not quite as sharp as some of its rivals. Battery life struggles when pushed, and you’ll need to be patient, as load times can be lengthy.

For

  • Surprisingly premium metal design
  • The latest stock Android software
  • Fingerprint scanner provides added security

Against

  • Photos from camera are a little dark
  • Storage fills up fast – a microSD card is a must
  • Load times can be sluggish

Of the three new Nokia smartphones unveiled at MWC 2017 (along with the rebooted Nokia 3310), the Nokia 5 sits most awkwardly, sandwiched as it is between the better-equipped Nokia 6 and eye-catchingly cheap Nokia 3.

It’s not that it’s a bad phone, but more that its bigger brother doesn't cost that much more, so it would be easy to chuck in the few extra bucks for the 6 – or, if you’re really looking to save the pennies, you might be better off with the 3.

Don't discount it just yet though. The Nokia 5 comes with a 5.2-inch HD display, Snapdragon 430 chipset, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of internal storage, a 13MP rear camera, 8MP front camera, fingerprint scanner and a 3,000mAh battery.

It’s worth mentioning at the outset that this phone isn’t made by Nokia. The iconic firm still exists, but has licensed its name for use on phones and tablets to a Finnish startup called HMD Global, which, in partnership with Chinese manufacturer Foxconn, is building and selling the Nokia 5 and its siblings.

Nokia 5 price and release date

  • SIM-free price: £179.99 (around $200, AU$275)
  • Available in UK from August 16, India from August 15

The Nokia 5 price is £179.99 (around $200, AU$275), making it an affordable smartphone. For that you get a HD display, full metal body and octa-core processor, which isn't bad at all.

This means it’s comfortably cheaper than the £219.99 Nokia 6, while still being a viable option for those who aren’t wooed by the £119.99 Nokia 3.

You’ll be able to get the Nokia 5 in the UK from August 16, with the phone being sold in a wide range of stores including Carphone Warehouse, EE, Argos, Tesco, Virgin and Amazon.

Meanwhile the Nokia 5 release date in India is set a day earlier, on August 15, where the handset will cost you Rs 12,899.

We’re currently still waiting to hear about the Nokia 5’s availability in the US and Australia, but we’ll update this review as soon as we get the information from HMD Global.

Design and display

The compact form factor of the Nokia 5 is something which may sway prospective buyers towards it, and away from the bigger Nokia 6.

It’s a more ergonomic design, with the curved edges nestling comfortably into the palm, and you can reach anywhere on screen with your thumb.

Crafted from a single block of 6000-series aluminum, the Nokia 5 has a surprisingly premium construction for a phone with such a low price tag. It feels like a more expensive phone when you pick it up, and that’s great.

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Another bonus of the Nokia 5 is the presence of a fingerprint scanner below the screen, which also doubles as the home navigation key. Digit readers tend to be reserved for pricier devices, so it’s good to see the tech filtering down the tiers, and especially to a device as cheap as the Nokia 5.

You can pick the Nokia 5 up in four different colors: copper, black, silver and blue.

The 720p HD display is bright and clear, giving a good level of detail to images and text alike. You can comfortably read emails, watch videos and enjoy gaming sessions on the 1280 x 720 screen.

It’s not overly vibrant when it comes to color reproduction, and if you put this LCD panel next to an AMOLED screen you’ll notice it’s duller to the eye. In isolation though, and considering the price you’re paying, it’s hard to knock the screen on the Nokia 5 too much.