Nothing is launching a phone this summer. Yes, you read that right. A company named Nothing is releasing an Android-powered phone later this year, called simply the Phone 1.
Carl Pei, the CEO of Nothing and former OnePlus co-founder, made the announcement.
The Nothing Phone 1 will use a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor when released. Pei has been spotted carrying the phone about and showing it off to important people.
Nothing has actually released a product before, but it was not a smartphone. The company released its Ear 1 true wireless buds last year. Apparently, Nothing has a penchant for simple naming schemes.
The Phone will probably have some light strips on its back, but there has been a report that it will feature some transparency, just like the Ear 1.
Beyond the processor, the specs of the Phone 1 are entirely unknown. Pei would not even reveal the function of the light strips, including whether it would be used for notifications like it was common with other phones from the past.
However, Pei feels free to talk about the software of the phone. The Phone 1 will run the Nothing OS, which is a skin of Google’s Android. The company has released some images of the OS, although we still don’t know what it can do or why buyers should prefer it.
The look, however, blends well with Nothing’s branding. It uses a combination of black, white, and red throughout the OS and dotted font, which makes up the company’s logo.
Pei claims all the teams that created the phone worked closely together, unlike other companies where they are heavily siloed. The result is a product that reveals a singular vision, even though the teams are scattered all over the UK, Sweden, and China.
Nothing actually acquired the rights to the Essential phone brand last year, but Pei said the acquisition was meant to capture trademarks. He revealed that the Phone 1 does not evoke the Essential phone in any way.
However, Pei admits he would like Nothing to emulate Dyson, whose designs possess individuality. This is not surprising as Nothing’s design director is nobody but Adam Bates, who was Dyson’s former design head.
He also revealed that Bates was able to bring over some members of his team at Dyson, thanks to his influence as a senior staff. Pei boasted that Nothing probably has one of the best industrial design teams in the world. The team includes Jesper Kouthoofd from Teenage Engineering and Tom Howard, who are responsible for the direction of Nothing’s product design.
Meanwhile, Nothing aims to build an ecosystem of devices and not just singular products. The Phone 1 will serve as the anchor. This makes Nothing a competitor to the likes of Apple, although it runs the risk of developing another walled garden. Pei mentions Apple’s Universal Control as his target for his Nothing ecosystem, which ties hardware like the iPhone, Macbook, and iPad together.
As to how Nothing will solve the problem of not owning the platform its devices would be built on, unlike Apple, Pei doesn’t have an answer, but he believes it can convince other companies to join the ecosystem. “I think we have a much easier time convincing partners because we help them do a lot of the work that they can’t do themselves. This is an end-to-end capability that we’re infusing our partners with,” according to Pei.