With the Nokia 8 Sirocco receiving its final update, I feel compelled to write about my experience with it. Not because of its demise but more for its glorified days. To me, the Nokia 8 Sirocco is a masterpiece, one that will transcend time and generation like the original Sirocco series. The Nokia 8 Sirocco was internally made to be a successor to the high-end offerings of HMD Global at the time. There were rumors of the existence of a Nokia 9 back then, way before the Nokia 9 Pureview was announced, and it is more likely to be the Nokia 8 Sirocco. This can be seen by the OEM made phone case for this model which is labelled as Nokia 9. HMD Global in recent times has made some questionable decisions, but they got it right with the Nokia 8 Scirocco.
I was hesitant to move forward from my trusted Lumia 950 XL that I skipped the Nokia 6 when it was announced. I even hesitated to get the Nokia 8 until I held it in my hands. The slim metallic profile of the device and its shiny blue was a new experience for me, coming from monotonous matte polycarbonate body. Do not get me wrong, the Nokia 8 was a fine device, and it was priced accordingly. But it was not exciting. The stock Android performs well with the flagship chipset, but the camera department was underwhelming especially coming from Pureview devices.
Nokia 8 Sirocco unfortunately was not available in many countries when it was announced. The 7.5mm thin body, with a stainless-steel frame, protected by Gorilla Glass 5 both front and back, with a curved 5.5’’ P-OLED screen was simply breathtaking. This was the epitome of Finnish craftmanship at its finest. Holding it sort of gives you an extra ‘edge’ over the others. The piano black finish with a metallic rim housing the 2 camera sensors over the back is minimalistic yet elegant.
The Nokia 8 Scirocco with Nokia 8800 Limited Edition and Scirocco
Android 10, stock, which is the final update it received, coupled with SD835 processor with a 6GB of RAM ensures smooth and clutter free operation. The dual sensor over the back, a 12MP wide and a 13 MP telephoto sensor with 2X optical zoom, was certainly more ‘useful’ compared to the monochrome sensor on the Nokia 8. While the images will not be joining the likes of the flagship series of Samsung or Apple, it certainly is above average and performs better than the ones on Nokia 8. The 5MP front camera does a decent job for video calls and the occasional selfies. The lack of 3.5mm head jack was acceptable as the device thins out at its periphery, and the inclusion of a USB C headphone dongle means you are not missing much. The USB Type C 3.1 ensures faster data transfer which is essential for the target group. While it doesn’t support a micro SD Card, the 128GB storage is adequate for most with options to store images for free in Google cloud back then.
The 3260mAh battery is adequate for daily use, which supports Quick Charge 4. Amazingly, this is the first HMD Global device that supports Qi wireless charging. The only other device that does wireless charging is the Nokia 9 Pureview. Now, this is where I had issues with the design. The protruding sensor over the back means its hard to get the body to come into contact with the charging pad, especially wireless charger for cars where there isn’t much room to adjust the device.
The curved OLED screen with the sleek stainless-steel frame. OEM case seems to suggest that the Nokia 8 Scirocco was supposed to be the first Nokia 9.
Consuming media on Nokia 8 Sirocco is fun. The OLED panel offers vibrant colors and deep blacks, and the edge display gets immersive. And to complement the visual feast for eyes, the Nokia 8 Sirocco comes with the best loudspeaker on any Nokia made device in recent times. While it is not a stereo speaker nor does it support Dolby Atmos, the single speaker produces crystal clear audio with excellent depth. This is one Nokia device I enjoy listening through the speaker instead of the headphone!
While HMD Global has ended the official support for the Nokia 8 Sirocco, the build quality and design aesthetics will definitely resonate among Nokia fans worldwide. A unicorn among devices, this is a device you would want to have in your collection. The name which refers to the Mediterranean wind that originates from Sahara, is aptly reserved for a device that looks, feels, and performs a notch higher than its peers.
To HMD Global, thank you for this device.
For the curious minds, here is how the Nokia 8 Sirocco performs compared to the rest of the 8 series!