If you’ve been enamoured by Nothing’s soon-to-launch “transparent” Phone (1), more precisely the mysterious LED-toting pattern on the back, and curious to know how the whole thing would work – and what its exact purpose would be – well there’s finally some concrete information out in the public domain thanks to Marques Brownlee. The popular YouTuber, who goes by the handle MKBHD, has managed to get his hands on a Phone (1) unit and while he doesn’t explicitly mention if it’s the final retail version, it appears to be very close to the real deal— but we’ll see.
In his first look video, MKBHD shows off the phone from the back as well as from the front. Spoiler alert, the Phone (1) will come with a hole punch cut-out at one end and slim bezels (Nothing has previously confirmed the phone will have no chin). The back is what’s really interesting, though.
The Nothing Phone (1) is said to come with over 900 customisable LEDs on the rear panel. Nothing will apparently give you lots of control over how you want them to light up for you through a “glyph interface” settings menu. Even though the whole thing appears as one connected strip –and can light up like one— there are interruptions in the middle. In all, the phone has dedicated lighting around the dual cameras, the wireless charging coil in the middle, and two more strips one at the top end and the other leading into the USB C charging port. There is another “red” LED dot, in addition, that would light up when the phone is recording a video.
The LED lights, naturally, will tell you when you get a new notification but Nothing seems to have also added some cool tricks such as the bottom strip can serve as a charging progress indicator. It has added ten notification sounds, in the phone, too, that each would have their own distinct light signature and more maybe added through a software update in the future. The whole thing can also serve as a fill light for when you’re shooting a photo under low and tricky lighting. MKBHD says these are “pretty bright” LEDs, though whether or not you can manually control their intensity isn’t clear at the time of writing.
Regardless, we will know soon enough as Nothing Phone (1) is set to launch globally on July 12. In select market, Nothing is offering a limited stock of the Phone (1) for sale between 21 June 2022 (14:00 BST) to 23 June (13:59 BST) on StockX, an online marketplace for auctioning limited-edition products. Stay tuned for more.