Nothing Phone 3's big upgrades could include on-device generative AI

Nothing Phone 1 Nothing Phone 2a Nothing Phone 2 Glyph lighting on
(Image credit: Future | James Ide)

The rumored Nothing Phone 3 could switch back to Qualcomm chips and use a Snapdragon 8s Gen 3 to help power onboard generative AI features, according to 91mobiles’ “industry sources who work closely with Nothing.”

This suggests that we could see something more powerful than the recently launched Nothing Phone 2a. This aligns with the idea that the Phone 3 will offer near-flagship performance while maintaining Nothing's reputation for making affordable phones. After all, both the Nothing Phone 1 and Phone 2 used slightly older hardware and some speculation pointed to Phone 3 following suit.

Snapping up Snapdragon

Unveiled in March, the Snapdragon 8s Gen 3 chip is designed for affordable flagship phones. It integrates advanced AI features such as on-device generative AI and intelligent photography tools, which can fill in missing details from photos. While it shares technology with the premium Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 used in this year's best Android phones, the more modest Snapdragon 8s Gen 3 offers slightly less power.

This will align the Nothing Phone 3 closer to top-tier, mid-range phones like the OnePlus 12R, Samsung Galaxy A55, and Motorola Edge 40.

It could also provide Phone 3 with improved battery life depending on the battery size due to the more efficient 4-nanometer technology from TSMC (Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co). 

However, the addition of the Snapdragon 8s Gen 3 chip would provide a significant boost in performance compared to both Phone 2 and Phone 2a. It features a Cortex-X4 core clocked at 3GHz, three performance cores reaching up to 2.8GHz, and four efficiency cores at 2GHz. This will place the chip between the 8 Gen 2 and 8 Gen 3 in terms of performance.

If the rumor is true then Nothing won’t be the only one taking advantage of the new Snapdragon 8s Gen 3 chip as Honor and Xiaomi will also be using it in some upcoming phones that are yet to be announced. 

The insider sources also claim that the phone will be released around July and will cost around 40,000 Rupees, which is approximately £380 / $479 / AU$737. This seems unlikely as it would put the proposed Nothing Phone 3’s price very close to the Nothing Phone 2a, which was $349 / £319 /AU$675, and make it cheaper than the Nothing Phone 2’s release price of $599 / £579 / AU$1,049.

This all coincides with Nothing posting a teaser for an unidentified product showing a frog jumping over a Beatle and promising “a big leap.”  Another post clarifies slightly by saying "Want to hear more? Don’t miss our next Community Update," which will be 18 April 2024.

See more

This could refer to a new phone, but it's more likely it could point to another audio product like the Nothing Ear 2 earbuds or headphones.  

You may also like

Staff Writer, Mobile Computing

James Ide is a writer for TechRadar specializing in phones and tablets, having previously worked at The Daily Mirror since 2016, covering news and reviews.  


James loves messing with the latest tech, especially phones due to their incredibly rapid pace of development.


When not surrounded by various devices and/or tinkering with gadgets while putting them through their paces, James has a love of handheld consoles.


He is almost the textbook definition of a geek, who loves sci-fi, comics, games and of course, all things tech. If you think you have a story for him or just want to challenge him at Smash Bros, get in touch.