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Nokia XR21 Design, Detailed Specifications Leaked; Could Feature Snapdragon 695 SoC

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Nokia’s XR20 was the brand’s first rugged Android smartphone. In our review, we praised it for its unique rugged qualities, but the handset fell short of expectations when it came to its performance and imaging capabilities when compared to other premium smartphones in the same price bracket. Almost two years in, there’s finally news of a successor. While it was earlier rumoured to be the Nokia XR30, the latest leak from the same source now confirms that it will be called the Nokia XR21 instead.

According to WinFuture, that leaked the first photos of the upcoming smartphone, the handset will be called the Nokia XR21. The phone is said to maintain its ruggedised design like its successor, but is expected to pack in some noticeable performance improvements that should hopefully warrant its premium price tag.

The leaked images suggest a design that looks very similar to the older Nokia XR20 from the front. The Google Assistant button is seen on the left side, while the volume and power button (which also doubles up as the fingerprint reader) are located on the right side, just like before. The location of the Emergency key appears to have changed a little on the Nokia XR21 and is now located at the centre at the top edge, instead of the left corner as on the Nokia XR20.

As per the leaked renders, the rear panel of the Nokia XR21 seems to be made of the same polymer composite material as before, but the frame around the side appears to have given a grippy texture, compared to the flat and matte-finished sides of the Nokia XR20. This is why it is also said to be as heavy as the previous model at 235g. What is different is the design and placement of the rear camera module. The camera module seems to have moved to the top left from the top centre and is seen with a rectangular layout instead of the square layout on the older model.

The report suggests that the Nokia XR21 could feature a 6.49-inch full-HD+ display, that seems a bit smaller than the one on the previous model, and a 120Hz screen refresh rate, which is new for this series. The display is said to be protected by Gorilla Glass Victus, which remains the same as before.

Nokia’s XR21 is reported to be powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 695 SoC, which should be a noticeable upgrade over the Snapdragon 480 SoC in the previous model. There seems to be only one variant for now and it has 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, as per the leak. All cameras seem to have gotten upgrades as well. The phone is said to get a 64-megapixel primary camera that is reportedly made by Omnivision, and an 8-megapixel telephoto with up to 8X hybrid zoom. A 16-megapixel front-facing camera is tipped to be in charge of selfies.

The Nokia XR21 is said to feature a 4,800mAh battery, which is an upgrade over the previous model’s 4,630mAh unit, along with a faster 33W charger. It’s unclear whether Nokia has retained or removed the XR20’s wireless charging feature in the new model, but buyers will get Bluetooth 5.1, NFC, Wi-Fi 6 and a 3.5mm headphone port, according to the report. The phone is tipped to offer two nanoSIM slots and also have eSIM functionality, while running on Android 12.

Although the above information seems quite detailed for a regular leak, it still is a leak, and we would therefore advise our readers to take it with a pinch of salt until the launch happens, which given the nature of this detailed leak, should take place soon.


Xiaomi launched its camera focussed flagship Xiaomi 13 Ultra smartphone, while Apple opened it’s first stores in India this week. We discuss these developments, as well as other reports on smartphone-related rumours and more on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Spotify, Gaana, JioSaavn, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.
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