Carl Pei, the former co-founder of OnePlus, revealed in March this year that his new startup, Nothing, would debut an Android smartphone later this year, presumably in “summer”. However, besides the device’s name, Pei left many specifics secret. But now we have further hints to follow. Pei and Nothing’s chief designer, Tom Howard, spent time with Wallpaper.com to outline the Nothing Phone 1’s creative design process. During the conversation, the crew highlighted some key aspects of the upcoming device.
As anticipated, the Phone (1) will feature a translucent appearance. This indicates that the aesthetics of the phone will resemble Nothing’s solitary other hardware offering, the Nothing Ear 1. Howard elaborates on this perspective by explaining how difficult it is to design a transparent smartphone that does not appear unwise.
“There are over 400 components in a smartphone, assembled in layers,” he said. “We wanted to celebrate the ‘good ones,’ the things we thought were really interesting to emphasize.” Obviously, this requires re-layering components, which increases the difficulty of making the smartphone.
The engineering process is analogous to a jigsaw puzzle, according to Howard, because the company desires to showcase parts such as the camera systems or charging coil, among many others. This design was based on a map of the New York subway made by Massimo Vignelli and Bob Noord in 1972. According to Pei, the company’s primary product, the Nothing ear(1), was indeed an inspiration, since the company strives for a consistent design across its products.
The above reflects Pei’s prior hint about the forthcoming phone, in which he said he wanted the firm’s products to compete with Apple’s ecosystem with the phone (1) at the core. This comprises Nothing OS, which can be previewed on some of the top Android phones, and the Nothing launcher, which previews the upcoming phone’s user interface.
Commenting on the design process, Carl Pei, CEO and Co-founder of Nothing, said,
One of the issues we saw with the tech industry was that nobody had a consistent way of designing products. Apart from Apple – you can see their coherent vision. But if you had a table full of products from another manufacturer, you don’t really see that. From the very start, we wanted to have a very distinct and iconic design language of our own.
Our philosophy is that products should be simple at a glance, but the more time you spend with them, the more they give back.