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Nothing Phone (1) — this mid-ranger is ready to challenge Pixel 6a

A screenshot from a hands-on video of the Nothing Phone (1), showing the phone's rear LEDs lit up
(Image credit: Marques Brownlee)

We're a couple of weeks out from the full July 12 reveal, but Nothing has come out with confirmation on one of the Phone (1)'s key specs. We know the chipset now, a custom mid-range Snapdragon. Other specs have also leaked, too.

Speaking to Input (opens in new tab), Nothing founder Carl Pei confirmed that the Phone (1) will use a custom Snapdragon 778G+, an enhanced version of the 778G from 2021. That means the Phone (1) is a mid-ranger, not the flagship that some previously believed. This actually makes a lot of sense, since a full flagship costs significantly more for a small startup like Nothing.

The Snapdragon 778G+ is a customized version Qualcomm did for Nothing, which alone is surprising. We suspect that Pei's reputation helped Nothing secure this deal, since Nothing is thus far unproven in the smartphone world. But what makes this plus version so special? According to Input, it comes down to wireless and reverse wireless charging.

So why go mid-range? Pei told Input that it came down to making the Phone (1) power-efficient while achieving adequate performance — Pei thinks flagship chips have diminishing returns. This balance further complicates itself with cost. In short, the Snapdragon 778G+ helps Nothing keep costs, and thus the price, down.

Nothing claims that the Snapdragon 778G+ is more efficient thermally than other chips like the Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 and Snapdragon 7 Gen 1. All told, we think going with a mid-range processor makes a lot of sense. It lines up with Pei's belief that specs reach a point of meaninglessness, a point he attempted to prove with the OnePlus Nord series while he still worked there.

Other specs leaked for the Nothing Phone (1) just before this confirmation. We've heard that the Phone (1) could have a 6.55-inch 120Hz display, 8GB of RAM, a 4,500 mAh battery, and 45W charging. The rear cameras are supposedly 50MP and 16MP, with the latter likely being an ultrawide — the front camera ought to be 16MP. 

Nothing will fully unveil the Phone (1) on July 12, so stay tuned.

Jordan Palmer
Jordan Palmer

Jordan is the Phones Editor for Tom's Guide, covering all things phone-related. He's written about phones for over five years and plans to continue for a long while to come. He loves nothing more than relaxing in his home with a book, game, or his latest personal writing project. Jordan likes finding new things to dive into, from books and games to new mechanical keyboard switches and fun keycap sets. Outside of work, you can find him poring over open-source software and his studies.