You can no longer count on reliability of budget smartphones or Android One

The story here is about my bad experience with a Nokia 7 Plus smartphone which is a certified Android One device.

I have been using Android over the last 7-8 years or so, and like every geek out there I was involved in flashing custom ROMs and tracking XDA forums for new builds. I even had one of the best phones suited for this purpose – The LG Nexus 4.

Now, these days due to adequate facilities available in the default Android provided by phone manufacturers there is no longer any significant incentive to flash a custom ROM and mess around with that, or may be due to my time constraints I’m not actively involved in looking what new stuff is cooking.

Around 2018 July or August, I had purchased a newly launched Nokia 7 plus because my previous phone a Motorola Z Play died in an accident when it got crushed by a vehicle after falling on road. I have always bought phones which priced around ₹15000 to ₹30000. That is a wide price spectrum and usually the premium flagships cost more than ₹30000. There was a time when you could get flagships for the same price.

Perhaps due to the excessive competition in the market these days, the average hardware or software quality of phones have taken a hit so their reliability has reduced.

The Nokia I had worked fine for a month or so, then it got a software update after which the phone screen started freezing at random times. It was just the screen – it wasn’t hanging due to applications because the moment I turned off the screen and turned it back on it used to work fine for a few minutes.

I tried all possible things like disabling touch to wake up the phone and even a factory reset but nothing solved the problem. Later when I searched about the issue I found many people complaining about the same issue on Nokia forums and elsewhere.

The price at which I had purchased the phone was around ₹23000 and eventually as I was fed up of the issue I sold it at a huge loss in just six months and purchased a Samsung Galaxy Note 9, which caused a significant financial loss for me but I am hoping the Note 9 works fine for me at least for next 4 years so that will even out the expense.

The Android One programme by Google needs some serious work by the company and it appears to be neglected for whatever reason by them. What prompted me to write this post? The following Twitter thread.

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