HMD Arrow Is Launching in India Soon, and It’s Poised to Miss the Mark

Remember Nokia? Of course, who doesn’t? Well, Nokia stopped making phones a while ago but the brand’s legacy was carried forward by a Finnish company called HMD. However, the Nokia brand died its third death recently when HMD Global announced it’s going to launch mobile devices under its brand name. Last month, the HMD Pulse series of phones finally landed in Europe. Now, HMD is gearing up for its India debut with the vanilla HMD Pulse set to arrive as HMD Arrow. And I suggest not having high hopes for it.

The brand has been building hype for its new non-Nokia phones since MWC 2024, only to hit us in the face with some entry-level specs. If the leaks are to be believed, HMD Arrow will be a rebranded Pulse. So, you will essentially get a phone with a 6.5-inch HD+ LCD display, a 13MP dual rear camera setup, Unisoc T606 SoC, and the like. You can take a look at the full unappetizing specs sheet on Beebom Gadgets here.

Oh, forgot to tell you, the HMD Pulse doesn’t come with 5G support, so the Arrow won’t either. In 2024, yes, a phone with no 5G. Besides, if you go by the £99.99 pricing in the UK, it translates to around Rs 10,500. Meanwhile, the German pricing is set at 140 euros, which is roughly Rs 12,500.

Going by that, we can expect the HMD Arrow to be priced somewhere around Rs. 10,000 to Rs. 12,000 in India. At around Rs 12,000, this might not be worth our time. There are some pretty solid options available in the same price bracket. So, don’t you dare believe HMD’s “striking a chord of affordability and performance,” marketing talk.

HMD Pulse aka HMD Arrow Front and Back Design
Image Courtesy: HMD

You have got the Realme P1 5G, which alongside 5G connectivity sports the MediaTek Dimensity 7050 chipset. This chipset is as capable as the Snapdragon 778G 5G, which is a great chipset in the segment. Not to mention that there’s also a Full-HD+ 120Hz AMOLED display with a 50MP-led camera setup.

You also get the POCO X6 Neo in this budget, which doesn’t just come with the Dimensity 6080 but also a 120Hz AMOLED display with Gorilla Glass 5 protection. There’s also a whopping 108MP-backed dual rear camera setup as well as 33W fast charging, among other commendable things on the specs front.

Then there’s the Moto G64 5G, which also seems like a better phone than HMD Arrow, offering the Dimensity 7025 chipset. This is a slightly better MediaTek equivalent of the Snapdragon 695 SoC. The handset also features a 50MP OIS camera setup and an FHD+ display, making it all the more a better device.

If HMD Arrow launches in the sub-Rs 15,000 price segment, it will be lost in the sea of phones that offer significantly more value for your hard-earned money.

If it launches in the under Rs 15,000 segment, the device will be lost in the sea of phones that offer significantly more value for your hard-earned money. Recently, we made a video about the best phones to get under Rs 15,000, so you can check that out if you are in the market for a new phone.

Let’s say that HMD launches the phone under Rs 10,000 in India. Even then, phones like the POCO M6 Pro 5G, the toned-down M6 5G, and even the Redmi 13C seem like much better options. Most importantly, these are 5G phones I’m talking about.

The point is that HMD Global has not learned from its past mistakes, and even after launching new mobile devices under its banner, they are failing to understand the demands of the Indian audience (much like Google with the Pixel 8a pricing).

The absence of 5G, adequate storage & RAM, an AMOLED or FHD+ display, and a capable enough processor only suggests that the HMD Arrow will tank in the Indian market. Yes, the self-repairable kit it may come with in India will probably help you play some Mechanix with the phone. But, that’s about it.

I may be proved wrong and HMD Global may launch a phone with competitive specifications at an aggressive price. Going by their track record, however, that’s unlikely. It’s ironic how HMD stands for Human Mobile Devices, and yet, I don’t think any human in their sane mind would use a mobile device this outdated in 2024.

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