NUTS Pro 2: Full-Screen Phone for 2,000 yuan

Nuts Pro 2 (4G memory + 32G flash memory) sold from 1799 RMB, up to 3299 RMB for highest configuration (6G memory + 256 flash memory)
Smartisan unveiled its new phone, the Nuts Pro 2, on November 7. The phone arrived only a half year after the first generation Nuts Pro debuted.

“I was concerned the phone would not be ready before November 11, but it went more smoothly than we expected,” CEO Luo Yonghao said in an interview after the release.

Jiemian got a first look at the red edition of the Nuts Pro 2, which comes with 6GB of memory and 64GB of flash storage. Compared to the first-generation product, the new phone feels smoother free of sharp angles. The Nuts Pro 2 is similar to the MI MIX 2 in terms of weight, while being much lighter than an iPhone 8 Plus. It still weighs more than the Nuts Pro.

Nuts Pro 2 features a 5.99-inch screen in 18:9 aspect ratio, the same size of other popular “full-screen” phones, and with a resolution of 2160×1080 pixels. The Nuts Pro 2 has almost the same screen size as MI MIX 2.

In terms of phone size, the 6-inch and 18:9 ratio screen currently available on the market is not much different from the previous 5.5-inch, 16:9 ratio screen. Nuts Pro 2’s overall size remains basically the same as the first generation Nuts Pro. It maintains the original size though the screen has enlarged from 5.5 inches to 5.99 inches.

The front camera and speaker is visible on the “forehead” of Nuts Pro 2, but the light sensor and range sensor are hidden. The phone keeps the same top and bottom frame size as other phones in the Nuts Pro series.

What’s interesting is how the Nuts Pro 2’s metal mid-frame has a CNC-cut groove, whose surface is put through a second anodizing to create a contrast in color and texture. This line is not obvious in the red edition of the Nuts Pro 2.

The fingerprint identification and Smartisan logo have been “combined” in the phone’s rear design. Testers said this new design did not affect the unlock speed.

Face identification is also satisfying. During the release conference, Luo said the Nuts Pro 2 uses a Face++ algorithm in its face identification and shows similar performance to the MI Note 3 and Vivo X 20, which use the same algorithm.

Nuts Pro 2 has a dedicated Idea Pills button on the left side. After pressing the Idea Pills button for several seconds, users can activate audio identification. It is a very convenient shortcut button for users looking seeking efficiency and an easy way to record any inspiration at any time.

Smartisan also presented the new edition of Smartisan OS 4.1 at its release conference. The new edition includes an accessibility mode. The previous three major functions, One Step, Big Bang and Idea Pills, have also been upgraded.

Smartisan said OS 4.1 for Nuts Pro 2 will receive an update on December 7, and the latest system for the Nuts Pro 2 is still Smartisan OS 4.1.

Upgrades include a One Step hotkey accessed with a long press on the volume button and inner-application dragging; Big Bang is upgraded to version 2.2 with new contextual substitutions; Idea Pills will be upgraded to the official version, with support for cloud synchronization and sharing ideas to contacts.

As Nuts Pro 2 is a full-screen phone, the existing Smartisan OS 4.0.1 has some other noticeable changes.

First of all, it has a virtual button on the screen, and that button can be called out or hidden away with a gesture. The second change is its multiple mission interfaces. Smartisan changed the previous 2×2 quadrant mission interface to the card style multi-mission interface which can be swiped. The switch is placed above the multiple mission interface, and the top has a music control bar. Strictly speaking, these two small optimizations make things much more “user-friendly” than the previous design.

Nuts Pro 2 is available in four memory configurations and three colors: light gold, fine red and bourbon.

This series is priced from 1,799 yuan for 4GB RAM and 32GB flash storage, to 3,299 yuan for 6GB memory and 256GB flash storage.

Compared to the first-generation Nuts Pro, the new product demonstrates many differences in its design and trendiness. Luo used the phrase “wild function, moderate consumption” to describe the hardware advantages of the phone at the release.

As for the controversial full screen, Luo said that after using an 18:9 ratio screen phone, he cannot go back to previous phones. This full-screen phone made by Smartisan is an attempt to adapt to consumers’ habits and marketing communication.

From left to right: MI MIX 2, Nuts Pro 2, iPhone 8 Plus

The Nuts Pro sold 1 million units within 6 months of its release. The total number of phones sold by Smartisan since its founding five years ago is 2 million. That is to say, among the domestic phone priced at 1,500 to 2,500 yuan, Nuts Pro series is trying to attract more consumers with its “distinctive” hardware and software.

It is worth noting that Smartisan’s several launches have all been successful among brand fans, who form the majority of its buyers. How Smartisan can bridge the gap and sell to the mass market is the question it must solve to maximize profits. Identifying the features users value and that will propel Smartisan to “major brand” status will be the key to building its reputation.

Before the unforeseeable advent of T Series and M Series, this task will fall on the Nuts Pro 2.

This article originally appeared in Jiemian and was translated by Pandaily.