ICYMI: HMD Global brings the Nokia C21 budget phone to the Philippines!

Budget phone from 2015 that somehow made it in 2022

HMD has brought the Nokia C21 budget phone. Such a shame that once was a big company is now churning out mediocre phone after mediocre phone. The C21 is another one of those. The only thing that keeps Nokia from dying out again is the constant updates thanks to Android One. Although in some devices, they kinda don’t deliver.

It has a 6.5in HD+ (1600x720px) IPS LCD on a waterdrop notch. It has a 20:9 aspect ratio.

The chipset it uses is the UNISOC SC9863A, a budget processor on a 28nm process with only one thing to boast from its surprisingly decent GPU, the PowerVR GE8322. Decent for the price it offers that is. Although one could argue that processors like the Snapdragon 460 and Helio G25 are better options than the SC9863A, having a lower nanometer process and less outdated CPU cores and GPU. Oh, also the SC9863A has also been recently found out to be vulnerable to malware attacks which, for Nokia, is a problem since security is one of their selling points for any given phone. This chipset is paired with 2GB RAM and 32GB storage in a world where Android Go phones start leveling up to 3GB RAM.

It has a very mediocre set of cameras. A single 8mp at the back and a single 5mp at the front. Its battery is also pretty small, only 3000mAh, and only charges at a 5W Micro-USB port. HMD probably forgot that we’re now in 2022, not 2015.

It has a rear fingerprint scanner which is one of the only few redeeming qualities of the phone. It has Bluetooth 4.2, a 3.5mm jack, and 4G services to boot. It uses Android 11 Go Edition.

In the Philippines, the phone will launch for Php5,490 on MemoXpress online (although they used the C21 Plus image) and also comes with a free umbrella.

In comparison, the Redmi 9A has a better processor for a lower price, along with a larger battery to boot. The Cherry Mobile Aqua Infinity is slightly more expensive but also you get a faster Helio P60 chipset, 8GB RAM+128GB internal storage, USB-C, and a quad-camera setup which also includes a 20mp depth camera for some reason. Although, it lacks a fingerprint sensor and it can only take up to 128GB for the MicroSD. Realme also has the Realme C21Y as a contender. It also costs similar to the Cherry Mobile Aqua Infinity (at ~Php6K) but has 4GB RAM+64GB internal storage, UNISOC T610, and a larger 5000mAh battery.


  • 6.5in. HD+ (1600x720px) IPS LCD
  • UNISOC SC9863A (28nm)
    • 8mp (main), AF
    • FRONT: 5mp
  • 3000mAh, 5W charging
  • Android 11 Go Edition
  • Rear fingerprint scanner, 4G Services, Google Assistant Key, Bluetooth 4.2
  • Warm Grey, Dark Blue
  • PRICE:
    • 2/32: Php 5,490

Source: MemoXpress, Nokia