Is it price importing the Nothing Cellphone 1?

It’s tempting to import the Nothing Cellphone 1. The mixture of eye-catching design, well-rounded efficiency and an inexpensive value could make it extra interesting than different mid-range smartphones, and even some dear flagships. However is it actually well worth the effort to carry the Phone 1 to the US? Not essentially. There are a selection of challenges you’ll have to beat, even as soon as the system reaches your fingers.

Importing might price greater than you suppose

The Phone 1 is priced at £399 within the UK and €469 in EU international locations, or about $478 US as of this writing. Nonetheless, you may’t simply ship one to an American transport handle. We haven’t discovered a serious UK or EU retailer that can ship Nothing’s product to the US, and it’s unlikely that you’ll given the Cellphone 1 hasn’t obtained the FCC certification wanted for authorized gross sales contained in the nation.

Until you understand somebody keen to function a go-between, you’ll have to enlist the assistance of a package deal forwarding service that can ship the Cellphone 1 to a US handle. Within the UK, your choices embrace corporations like Forward2Me, MyUS and Reship. Lots of them will deal with single shipments, however it’s possible you’ll want to enroll in a membership (usually $10 per 30 days). And a person order will be costly. Forward2Me, for example, at the moment estimates that you simply’ll pay between $29 to $47 to ship a typical smartphone field.

You may not need to pay vital import charges, at the least. Whereas US Customs and Border Safety does require a Merchandise Processing Charge (between $2 and $10 for casual entries like this), you may import personal-use merchandise duty- and tax-free once they’re price lower than $800. Bundle forwarders will deal with the paperwork, and can regularly quote the true transport value. With that stated, you’ll want to learn the phrases for these companies and put together for the potential for additional fees.

The telephone may not work correctly

Nothing Phone 1 home screen

Mat Smith/Engadget

The bills is probably not the true dealbreaker. If something, you’ll want to fret extra about community compatibility. Whereas the Nothing Cellphone 1 does assist some US carriers’ 5G and LTE frequencies, it lacks long-range bands for T-Cell and Verizon. You received’t get as strong protection, and the efficiency might fall quick. In testing, PCMag’s Sascha Segan noticed that the Cellphone 1 solely managed 100Mbps downloads on 5G in areas the place different telephones reached 400Mbps.

That is assuming you will get the handset to work within the first place. With out certification from the FCC or American carriers, there are not any ensures you’ll get linked. Nothing warns that the Cellphone 1 can’t place 5G or LTE calls on AT&T as an uncertified system, and Segan misplaced Verizon service after two hours of use. Don’t anticipate the performance to enhance, both. As Nothing founder Carl Pei defined to PCMag, US certification wasn’t well worth the hassle with out a native provider settlement; any damaged connectivity is more likely to keep damaged.

After-sale assist is an issue, too. Nothing’s warranty solely covers service inside the unique buy area, so you may’t ask for official assist. We additionally wouldn’t anticipate impartial restore retailers to repair the Cellphone 1. You’ll most likely have to purchase a model new telephone if one thing breaks, in different phrases.

What are the options?

Google Pixel 6a in Sage color


Pei has indicated that group buyers within the US may get the Cellphone 1 by a closed beta program. Nothing additionally has “huge plans” to launch a US-friendly telephone at some stage. In case you’re not a part of that beta and aren’t keen to attend for a sequel, although, you’re most likely higher off shopping for an alternate system. Fortunately, there are a couple of viable fashions within the sub-$500 vary.

Google’s Pixel 6a (launching July twenty eighth) often is the best alternative. It received’t have the Cellphone 1’s clean 120Hz display, wi-fi charging or twin 50-megapixel rear cameras, however you’re going to get a speedy processor and the most recent Google software program options for a modest $449. In case you crave a high-refresh display, Motorola’s 144Hz-capable 2021 Edge is on sale for $400 as we write this. And sure, the iPhone 11 continues to be surprisingly succesful in the event you don’t thoughts the three-year-old specs.

We’d advise towards Samsung’s sluggish Galaxy A53 5G, however it’s an possibility in the event you’re decided to get a 120Hz show or just desire the protection of a giant model’s ecosystem. You may also need to wait awhile. Apple ought to have a greater $500 system when it updates the iPhone lineup in September (probably the iPhone 12), and the strong Galaxy S21 FE may even see additional value cuts.

All merchandise really helpful by Engadget are chosen by our editorial crew, impartial of our father or mother firm. A few of our tales embrace affiliate hyperlinks. In case you purchase one thing by certainly one of these hyperlinks, we might earn an affiliate fee.

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