When it comes to mobile phones, the Nokia brand carries a lot of brand recognition. Users of the original Nokia phones will remember their durability, and HMD Global are aiming to build on that with their focus on both durability and repairability for their latest devices. The latest to launch is the Nokia G42, coming with a 3 year warranty, as well as options to repair the phone yourself. 

HMD Global launched a partnership with iFixit earlier this year, and the Nokia G42 leverages this partnership with guides available for repairs on the display, charging port and battery. You can also purchase your parts and a tool kit with all the tools you need. 

The Nokia G42 includes a decent hardware load out with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 480+ 5G processor, 6GB of RAM and 128GB of on-board storage. There’s a large 6.56” HD+ resolution display on the front which has a 90Hz refresh rate and there’s a 5,000mAh battery powering the lot. 

It comes in three colour options, ‘So Grey’, ‘So Pink’ and a stunning ‘So Purple’ colour inspired by the 2023 Colour of the Year – Digital Lavender which is what HMD Global have sent across for review. 

I’ve been using the Nokia G42 for a couple of weeks now, and here’s how it went. 

Hardware and Design

The Nokia G42 is a fairly slim device at just 8.55mm thin, with a squared off edge that makes it comfortable to keep a hold of. 

There’s a volume rocker and fingerprint sensor enabled power button on the left. The  fingerprint sensor is decently fast and accurate, unlocking the phone with a simple touch. 

There’s a SIM tray on the right where you can also add a microSD card to boost the 128GB of on-board storage. It’s also in this slot you’ll find the notch you need when dismantling the phone for repair.

The base of the phone has the USB-C port as well as a bottom firing speaker and a headphone jack on the bottom.

There’s a large 6.56” HD+ resolution display with 90Hz refresh rate on the front with a punch hole notch at the top for the triple camera array on the rear. The camera island is fairly small, but does still mean that the phone won’t lay flat on a desk. 

The shimmering ‘So Purple’ coloured polycarbonate backing plate on the rear of the phone is both gorgeous and durable. It has a matte type finish which doesn’t show fingerprints, but also . Since there’s no TPU bumper case included with the phone, it’s something to consider. 

Display and Audio

The 6.56” HD+ (720×1612) resolution display on the front is covered with Corning Gorilla Glass 3 and offers a smooth experience with up to 90Hz refresh rate. 

It’s decently bright even when outdoors, capable of up to 560 nits with brightness boost, though I had to manually adjust it after the auto brightness took too long to react.

The 90Hz refresh rate runs in Adaptive mode offering the faster refresh rate when required and dropping down to 60Hz to save battery. If you want you can force the display to 60Hz for improved battery life.

The display has decent viewing angles and decent colour reproduction when streaming video, however the single down-firing mono speaker doesn’t offer a huge amount of quality sound. For  – but it’s enough to watch something and there’s the headphone jack on the base and Bluetooth to connect wireless headphones.

Performance and Connectivity

As their first repairable 5G device, the Nokia G42 has a good start where it comes to specs. It’s powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 480+ 5G SoC with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of on-board storage. 

As far as performance goes the phone runs apps pretty well, with apps and games running quite well once loaded. It’s the initial loading and multi tasking which shows a bit of lag.

I ran it through Geekbench and 3DMark and here’s how it went. 

The Snapdragon 480+ SoC does give the phone 5G connectivity and it offers decently fast speeds on both speed tests and in real world use. 

As well as Bluetooth 5.1, the phone includes support for Wifi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac/ax-ready and also includes NFC for Tap & Pay.

Battery and Charging

There’s a 5000 mAh battery inside the Nokia G42 with HMD Global spruiking up to 3 day’s of battery life. The phone supports 20W fast charging(QC3.0 & PD3.0), however there’s no charger included in the box. 

The battery life on the Nokia G42 is a solid 2-days, with the battery still good into the third day – though I found I was in desperate need of a charge. 

Charging times aren’t terribly impressive with support only for 20W wired charging. There’s no wireless charging, but that’s not unusual at this end of the market. If you need some quick  power using a 20W charger you can get around 12% back in 15 minutes, or just over 50% in 30 minutes. Charging to 100% took just under two hours, so it’s worth charging overnight. 


The phone includes three sensors on the rear. A 50 MP Main sensor, with a 2 MP Depth & 2 MP Macro sensors. There’s also an 8MP selfie camera on the front.

The photo quality of the 50MP main sensor is fairly decent in good light and the depth sensor offers a decent portrait mode. The macro camera is there, and looks pretty decent when you find a use for it.

Low light capabilities are decent, though it does struggle if there’s just not enough light.


While the phone runs pretty well as a whole, it’s the repairability that’s a focus for the Nokia G42. The review phone came with an iFixit toolkit which is a fairly impressive piece of kit, containing everything you’ll need to dismantle the phone and replace parts. 

Parts are easily sourced through iFixit, who also offer the easy to follow guides on replacing the battery, charging port and display. Parts from iFixit include the necessary tools in the pack, with a charging port priced at $42.99, a display at $89.99 and a battery is just $49.99.

In practice the phone is fairly easy to pull apart. The simple plastic pick is inserted into a notch below the SIM tray when you remove it. Once you insert the pick you can prise apart the plastic rear from the rest of the phone. There’s screwdriver tips included to help remove the fingerprint sensor cable and tweezers to help remove the cable safely. 

HMD Global says that parts you replace under warranty are of course covered under that 3-year warranty as well which is a bonus.

Overall if you’re confident about playing around with parts and electronics, or confident in following directions in guides, then this is a solid option. It allows you to replace parts that break, as well as your battery as it ages and gets less efficient giving you more options over the life of your phone. If you’re not comfortable with this, you can of course always get in touch with HMD Global for warranty


Launching with Android 13, and with very little else installed, the Nokia G42 comes out of the box with the June 5th Security patch and 1st of January Google Play update. There’s an OTA update available straight out of the box which you’ll be prompted to install and this takes the security update to August 5th. 

HMD Global has promised two OS updates for the Nokia G42, as well as three years of monthly security updates. Given the phone is getting Android 14 this year, that means Android 15 next year is the last update. 

On the actual software, Nokia phones are very clean in terms of the look and feel of Android including Material You for theming.

On the app front your usual Google apps are installed, but HMD Global has also chosen to include an ‘Apps’ folder on your home screen filled with partner apps. The apps include Netflix, LinkedIn, Spotify, ExpressVPN, GoPro Quik and Booking.com – as well as the Nokia ‘My Device’ app – a place to check your device health, find apps or guides on how to use your phone better. 

Should you buy it?

The Nokia G42 offers a phone which looks fantastic (especially in the purple), as well as the  promise of repairability on a budget range phone. The parts are reasonably priced and the guides are reasonably easy to follow for most people.

As a phone it looks great in So Purple with great battery life and a decent camera, though the performance and audio overall could be improved. 

At $449 the Nokia G42 is reasonably priced for the 5G capability, great battery life and camera. The option to repair the phone is what sets it apart and it comes down to whether that’s something you think is important enough to you. 

If you want to check the Nokia G42 out in person you can find it at JB Hi-Fi, Officeworks, Big W (online), Nokia.com, Amazon, Catch, Kogan and TVSN.