There isn’t much of a catch to it, but Glyph Interface is more of a gimmick or you could call it cool lights, and having them is quite nice. Moreover, it’s more of a marketing tactic meant to grab customers’ attention and identify the phone, Nothing Phone 1.
However, it is very amazing to have a unique design on a smartphone instead of the same old dull designs. Without a doubt I’m pretty much positive that it will stand out even if you mix it up with hundreds of phones.
But do you really need it? Let’s find out.
What is Glyph Interface?
Glyph Interface is light array which has over 900 LEDs, wrap around the rear of the Nothing Phone 1, providing a clean continuous light strip. It goes around the twin cameras, then the wireless charging pad in the middle, a stripe on the top corner, and down by the charging port at the bottom.
What does Glyph Interface do?
You can use it as a notification light (yes, that’s a pretty big light for a notification) or a fill light for the camera when taking pictures. While charging, it even acts as a progress bar and, when using reverse wireless charging, lights the light surrounding the wireless charging pad.
To be more specific about notifications, any Android phone nowadays allows you to choose a different ringtone for each contact you have, thus you will end up with different ringtones for each contact. However, Nothing went the extra mile in bringing you different lighting patterns to every ringtone that blinks differently when you get a call. Nothing Phone 1 includes four light arrays that flash in response to the ringtone. And if you’re expecting it to work like an equalizer like we used to see in JetAudio (good old days), you’re wrong. Each light array just pops according to a pattern. That’s pretty much it.
It currently works for phone calls, and we hope to see an upgrade in the future that will allow it to function with other notifications.
Why do I need Glyph Interface?
Actually, you don’t. It’s a feature that nobody asked for.
It is a marketing strategy used by Nothing Company to gain market attention and nothing else. The smartphone market, which Apple and Samsung largely dominate, is massive, and every manufacturer competes with one another to secure a spot for themselves.
Nothing is a brand-new company with headquarters in London, and Nothing Phone (1) is their very first smartphone to be sold. It is practically hard for a new company and a new product to succeed in this market.
Therefore, you must create something unique that no one else does in order to generate news about it and get people talk about it. And the glyph interface is currently carrying out that task.
Moreover, the CEO of Nothing, Carl Pei, who is best known as the co-founder of OnePlus, was born to create hype around the tech community.
Let’s be honest, who would purchase a phone from a company that they knew nothing about? That’s what Carl Pei did; He made headlines in the community long before the product’s release date.
I’m not writing this to complain that glyph lights aren’t worth anything; they are fantastic, but the use cases for these lights are relatively limited, and they won’t completely revolutionize the user experience.
Carl Pei stated this during the launch event,
According to the CEO, you can use it as a visual ringtone so that you can set your phone on silent mode without worrying. Why does it sound familiar? because that’s what “Always on Display” does in the first place.
The most heartbreaking side about this is that most people, no matter where they are, keep their phone face up wherever they go for very good two reasons. One reason is that we don’t always trust the surface on which we keep our phones, so we keep it face up to avoid scratching the display. The second benefit is that we can quickly check the phone whenever a notification or a call pops up. And you don’t have to remember patterns to figure out who is calling.
Apart from the Glyph Interface, the Nothing Phone (1) is a brilliant smartphone that can easily compete with other mid-range mobile phones. However, these glyph lights aren’t required for it. It’s only there to make their news extra crisp and get people to talk about it, which is exactly what I’m doing right now.