The Nothing Phone 2a looks to have unusual eye-like cameras and few glyphs

Nothing Phone 2 review back angled table - white balanced
The Nothing Phone 2 (Image credit: Future | Alex Walker-Todd)

There’s been some confusion over the design of the Nothing Phone 2a, as two very different possible encarnations have previously leaked. But we now know that one of these is almost certainly fake, while the other is probably at least partially accurate.

The fake design was shared by the usually reliable leaker @OnLeaks in collaboration with SmartPrix, but after some digging, the two concluded that OnLeaks' source had supplied an image of a ditched design that can be seen back in promo videos for the Nothing Phone 1. In other words, a design the company may have once considered for the original phone, but almost certainly isn’t resurrecting now.

There’s more evidence for this design being fake too, as – with its fairly familiar but glyph-free appearance – it doesn’t seem to line up with text Nothing has used in teasers for the Phone 2a, where it says “see the world through fresh eyes.”

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What does line up with that text is the other design we’ve seen. One that's surfaced multiple times and from multiple sources. You can see both leaked designs in the tweet above, with the likely option being the one sporting lateral cameras, akin to a pair of eyes, which makes more sense of that teaser text.

This design also includes existing Nothing phones' signature glyph lighting, albeit with fewer segments than on the Nothing Phone 2. The presence of glyphs makes sense as well, since this is a key, distinctive feature of the Nothing Phone line; as such, it would seem odd for the company to ditch this.

Down to one design

So this latter design is almost certainly at least partially right – though we can’t rule out the possibility that some details are wrong – and the former is most likely totally fake, or at least a very old design that Nothing may have been considering for the original model, before the phone took its final form.

Beyond the design, previous leaks have pointed to the Nothing Phone 2a having 6.7-inch FHD+ AMOLED screen with a 120Hz refresh rate, a MediaTek Dimensity 7200 chipset, a pair of 50MP cameras on the back, and a 32MP camera on the front. Those are comfortably mid-range specs, and are likely to be paired with a fairly affordable price.

We should find out the exact specs and pricing – and whether this odd eye-like camera layout is accurate – soon, with reports suggesting the Nothing Phone 2a could be unveiled at MWC 2024, which kicks off on February 26.

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James Rogerson

James is a freelance phones, tablets and wearables writer and sub-editor at TechRadar. He has a love for everything ‘smart’, from watches to lights, and can often be found arguing with AI assistants or drowning in the latest apps. James also contributes to, and and has written for T3, Digital Camera World, Clarity Media and others, with work on the web, in print and on TV.