To be fair, Nothing never really said that its first phone would be a high-end premium device, but many probably expected it would at least be competitive. According to an entry on Geekbench, however, the Nothing Phone (1) will run on a Qualcomm Snapdragon 778G+ 5G, a mid-range chipset that was launched last year. This will be accompanied by 8GB of RAM, which, though not exactly lacking, also sounds modest for a much-hyped flagship.
This is more of a problem of managing expectations and balancing hype. Again, through no fault of the company, people have come to expect that the Nothing Phone (1) would at least boast the more recent Snapdragon 7 Gen 1 chipset. It would seem that aside from its novel back design, the Nothing Phone (1) has yet to present something that really sets it apart from its peers. We’ll have to see when it launches if the overall experience will match its hype.
Unfortunately, not many will be able to get that first experience. Mirroring the start of OnePlus’ own journey, Nothing is making the Phone (1) available through an invite-system only. As proven by its spiritual predecessor, this kind of constrained availability successfully helps drive up hype, excitement, and even desire for a limited edition product. Then again, this is also nothing new, and many people were burned by OnePlus’ system before. Hopefully, Pei has learned enough from that not to repeat the same mistakes.